Arsenal have announced the departure of Emiliano Martinez, who joins Aston Villa for a reported fee of £20 million.
Following weeks of speculation, Arsenal have finally officiated the exit of Emiliano Martinez. The goalkeeper has joined Aston Villa, signing a four-year deal with the club, who have reportedly paid around £20 million for his services.
Aston Villa manager Dean Smith was desperate to secure the signing of a goalkeeper this summer and was delighted with the arrival of Martinez. “We are really pleased with the signing of our new goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez,” he said in an official statement.
“We know how highly Arsenal rated him and we watched his outstanding performances last season in a trophy-winning top side. We moved for Emi when we saw the opportunity, as it is rare to be able to buy a top class goalkeeper who hasn’t yet reached their peak age and who can therefore be a key player for our Club for the long term,” Smith added.
Martinez’s move could serve as a boon for Aston Villa, who have paid a £20 million fee to Arsenal, as reported by The Guardian. The Argentine was one of Premier League’s best goalkeepers during the back end of last season, attaining a save percentage of almost 80%.
🟣 #WelcomeEmi 🟣
— Aston Villa (@AVFCOfficial) September 16, 2020
His performances in between the sticks were crucial in helping Arsenal secure the FA Cup as well as the Community Shield, earlier this summer. Unfortunately for the Gunners, Martinez was unwilling to continue as Bernd Leno’s understudy at the Emirates. And his departure will certainly force Mikel Arteta to find a replacement as the club do lack depth in the goalkeeping department.
Arsenal have already been linked with a move for Brentford star David Raya. However, the Championship outfit are reluctant on offloading the Spaniard following an excellent season that saw him emerge as one of the league’s best goalkeeper.
As a result, Dijon goalkeeper Runar Alex Runarsson has emerged as an alternative. The Iceland international is not as qualified as Raya despite playing in Ligue, but could make for a decent cost-effective option in Arsenal’s bid to find an deputy for Leno.
As far as Martinez is concerned, however, his £20 million departure could be useful for Arsenal from a financial perspective. The Gunners have had difficulties signing big name stars due to the current financial climate so the goalkeeper’s sale could perhaps enable them fund move for someone like Thomas Partey this summer.