Premier League Legend Tears Into Arsenal Star for ‘Switching Off’ During Aston Villa Defeat

Premier League Legend Tears Into Arsenal Star for ‘Switching Off’ During Aston Villa Defeat

Godwin Nii Armah Tagoe
April 15, 2024 at 6:30 PM
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  • Gabriel Martinelli has been blamed for Arsenal's loss against Aston Villa
  • The 22-year-old didn't have the expected impact after he was subbed on
  • The surprise defeat to Villa has dealt a huge blow to their title aspirations

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Ian Wright has criticised Arsenal forward, Gabriel Martinelli, for his sub-par performance in his side's unexpected defeat at the hands of Aston Villa on Sunday.

The Gunners had the chance to usurp Manchester City at the summit of the Premier League log but Villa, led by former Arsenal manager Unai Emery, had other ideas.

Aston Villa, Arsenal, Gabriel Martinelli, Ian Wright, Premier League, switch off.
Arsenal's Gabriel Martinelli chases Ezri Konsa of Aston Villa for the ball. Photo by Stuart MacFarlane.
Source: Getty Images

The Spanish tactician neutralised his former side, particularly in the second half, before Leon Bailey and Ollie Watkins delivered significant blows to stun Mikel Arteta's charges, per Eurosport.

With just six games left in the campaign, Pep Guardiola's team now sits two points ahead of both Arsenal and Liverpool, with the two level on points but separated by goal difference.

Reflecting on Arsenal's loss for Premier League Productions, Wright singled out Martinelli for criticism, pointing out his lapse in concentration in the lead-up to the first goal.

Arsenal icon Wright blames Martinelli for Villa loss

Despite coming on as a second-half substitute for Leandro Trossard, the Brazilian winger failed to track Bailey's movement at the back post, allowing him to receive a cross from Lucas Digne and score.

"Look at Martinelli; this is what we’ve been saying because Arsenal have been so good defensively this season," the Arsenal legend said, as quoted by Metro.

Providing clarity on why the Brazilian was blameable for Bailey's opener, Wright hinted that Martinelli had failed to discharge his defensive duties diligently against the Villans.

"Everyone has been switched on, but in this instance, he switches off. Bailey is his man. That’s his man in this situation. He has to get closer to him. It’s as simple as that."
He added: "Arsenal gave Villa too many opportunities late on, and they took them. Martinelli switches off at the back post. He realised it was too late. That’s the difference."

Man City backed to defend title after Arsenal slump

Following a weekend of intense matches, a supercomputer has forecasted the potential final standings for the Premier League, as reported by Sports Brief.

As Manchester City, Arsenal, and Liverpool compete for the title, Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United aim for a top-four position, challenging Villa.

According to the latest prediction from the supercomputer, Manchester City are Premier League favourites and are being predicted to defend the title.

Godwin Nii Armah Tagoe photo
Godwin Nii Armah Tagoe
Godwin Nii Armah Tagoe is a Ligue 1, Bundesliga, and La Liga editor with five-year experience. He previously worked with Sports Corna and 360SportsGH.