Arteta and Arsenal renew interest in Brazil Under-23s striker

Date published: Saturday 5th June 2021 11:30 - Jason Soutar

Yuri Alberto

Arsenal have been linked with Brazilian striker Yuri Alberto this summer as Mikel Arteta looks to bolster his squad for next season.

Alberto has scored 17 goals in 49 matches for Internacional since arriving from Santos where he originally gained interest from Arsenal as a 17-year-old.

According to Globo Esporte, the Gunners face competition from Spanish giants Barcelona if they are to make a move for the Brazil Under-23 forward.


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Despite being South American, Alberto reportedly holds a European passport, which would make him a tempting signing for the likes of Arsenal and Barcelona.

The 20-year-old still has four years left on his contract with Internacional, who have apparently put an £11 million price tag on the striker.

Arsenal have a recent history of delving into the Brazilian market, signing Gabriel Martinelli from Ituano in 2019.

Martinelli has emerged as a fans favourite at the Emirates, with many fans pleading for Arteta to give the youngster more playing time.

However, the Spaniard has emphasised that Arsenal fans should remain patient due to his injury concerns and the number of youngsters he has at his disposal in the Brazilian’s position.

Speaking in April, Arteta said: “When you compare that with a lot of Premier League clubs at the top end it’s not common. Gabriel is having the right path, the right development, he’s got an incredible attitude and talent and has got all the future in front of him.

“What we have to do is to manage that, try to give him the right amount of minutes, the right games for him to develop to continue to get better.

“I respect that people want to see more of him, and Gabi did really well, but we have to be patient. He is getting the right development.”

Former player Martin Keown has also criticised Arteta for his treatment of Martinelli, claiming that the rookie manager “doesn’t like” the 19-year-old.

“I’ve been concerned as to why that player is not playing,” Keown told BT Sport after Arsenal’s 0-0 draw against Villarreal in April.

When asked why he thought Martinelli wasn’t being selected, Keown replied: “Because the manager doesn’t like him. It’s as simple as that.

“Keep him in the team. Play him. You’ve seen what you’ve done with Smith Rowe and Saka. Support the young players, that’s where the energy is coming.”

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