North London is beginning to turn into a mini-Brazil.
Fans’ adoration for Gabriel Martinelli knows no bounds, David Luiz has slowly regained some faith from his supporters, Gabriel Magalhaes is already the best central defender at Arsenal and Willian…not so much.
Some may call it coincidence that Arsenal are finding themselves with a growing Brazilian contingent, but employing technical director Edu Gaspar into a key recruitment role at the club may suggest otherwise.
It’s true that Martinelli joining was partly due to Edu’s close contacts in his home nation, similarly with the January loan signing of Pablo Mari, who was plying his trade with Flamengo at the time.
When such a trend begins it becomes easier for rumours to emerge, with the latest murmurings coming out of Italy where Calcio Mercato claim Arsenal are one of six sides interested in Sao Paolo striker Brenner.
His electric form in Brazil’s Serie A has seen Tricolor go unbeaten since early September, netting 15 goals and registering three assists in 25 outings. As it stands, he’s averaging a goal every 94 minutes of action.
With Alexandre Lacazette failing to capture the imagination of the Arsenal fans with some sub-par (perhaps that’s too kind) displays of late, naturally there are going to be moves mooted for strikers across the globe. Add in the Brazilian factor, and the speculation is heightened.
However, the Gunners aren’t the only ones linked with 20-year-old Brenner, who has Italian ancestry and can obtain a European passport, as Ajax, Juventus, Lazio, AC Milan and Paris Saint-Germain are also credited with interest.
Brenner does, sadly, have a hefty £45m release clause for Arsenal to contend with and is contracted to the club until 2022. Hardly pocket money. Yet it’s added that this sum could be negotiated next summer, and Arsenal’s intrigue remains. Champions League qualification is paramount, then.
Being naturally talented is of the upmost importance, but any playing moving to English shores has a great deal of integration to deal with in order to be a roaring success. In truth, Martinelli shouldn’t have hit the ground running quite as well as he has. Arsenal are overjoyed he has, but it is a rare case of maturity perfectly combining with raw ability.
Edu may be criticised from a few corners of the Emirates, yet this is his field of expertise and perhaps his say in this deal may be worth heeding.