Gabriel Martinelli became the youngest player in Arsenal history to score on his full league debut when he netted the club’s equaliser against West Ham, but that shouldn’t surprise anyone.

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 09: Gabriel Martinelli of Arsenal scores his sides first goal  during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Arsenal FC at London Stadium on December 09, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 09: Gabriel Martinelli of Arsenal scores his sides first goal during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Arsenal FC at London Stadium on December 09, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

Sitting one-nil down, Arsenal fans can be forgiven for thinking their club were about to hit double figures without a win until Gabriel Martinelli stepped up and changed all that.

It’s what he does. He starts, he scores.

Despite only being 18, the forward has eight goals and two assists from 14 games. But that only tells part of the story. While he might have played the full 90 in all Europa League and EFL cup games, this was his first start in the Premier League and his first full 90 there.

Looking at just his minutes, Martinelli is averaging a goal or assist every 69.6 minutes in his first season in England.

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 09: Gabriel Martinelli of Arsenal celebrates after scoring his sides first goal  during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Arsenal FC at London Stadium on December 09, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 09: Gabriel Martinelli sets new Arsenal record and celebrates after scoring his sides first goal during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Arsenal FC at London Stadium on December 09, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

To compare, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, the only player at the club to score more than that Brazilian this season, has 13 goals and one assist from 19 games, but he’s played almost 1,000 minutes more (1,631 v 696) and averages a goal or assist every 116.5 minutes.

But none of that is record breaking, impressive as it is.

Gabriel Martinelli sets new Arsenal record

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 09: Gabriel Martinelli of Arsenal is closed down by Ryan Fredricks of West Ham United  during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Arsenal FC at London Stadium on December 09, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 09: Gabriel Martinelli of Arsenal is closed down by Ryan Fredricks of West Ham United during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Arsenal FC at London Stadium on December 09, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

What is impressive is that the teenager, at 18 years and 174 days, is the youngest player ever to score on his debut for Arsenal.

Plus that makes it eight goals from just seven starts.

Every time I see him play I can’t help but think what an absolute bargain he was.

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Writer. Feminist. Dreamer. Gooner. Owner of DailyCannon.com, writing about Arsenal since 2008. Sometimes found in the Guardian, Vice.com & elsewhere talking queer issues, politics & football. If in doubt, assume sarcasm.