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Martinelli Reveals That Arsenal Blocked Brazil Call

Arsenal attacker Gabriel Martinelli has revealed that Arsenal made the decision not to allow the player to represent Brazil in the current Olympic qualifiers.

Martinelli was called up but Arsenal were not obliged to release him because it’s not an officially sanctioned FIFA international window.

With the Brazilian winning a place in the Gunners’ starting line-up, he says the club wanted to keep him playing for them.

“I said that if it was up to me I would play. But we already knew it would be difficult. It was a time when I was starter at Arsenal, and people preferred not to let me go,” he told UOL Esporte.

Current Brazil Technical Director Juninho Paulista used to be the President of Martinelli’s previous club Ituano. Martinelli revealed he has spoken to Juninho.

““He [Juninho] already called me, spoke to me and congratulated me on what I’m doing. I haven’t been called up yet, but I’m very calm about it.

“We talked a little after he went to the national team. He called me, said that this was the opportunity of my life, that I should give my best because things would go well. He was a fundamental guy in the four years that I spent at Ituano.”


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