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Arsenal favourites to land Brazilian teenage striker

Arsenal have emerged as favourites to sign 17-year old Brazilian striker Gabriel Martinelli, with the likes of Crystal Palace and Watford also said to be interested.

Currently plying his trade in the Brazilian 4th division with Ithuano, he has had previous experience in England. He had two trial periods with Manchester United when Jose Mourinho was manager, and also trained with Barcelona for a spell.

Neither club decided to pursue their interest at the time, but he has since gone to impress this season scoring 4 times and providing three assists in the State Championship.

Now Arsenal who will not be able to sign him until he turns 18 in June are set to press ahead with a deal reported to be worth £6.9 million.  Martinelli is said to be on the verge of obtaining an Italian passport, which would be very beneficial for any deal to the Premier League as there will no requirement to obtain a work permit.