Arsenal are prepared to cash in on Emiliano Martinez this summer according to Adam Crafton of The Athletic.
Arsenal Prepared to Sell Martinez This Summer
FA Cup Heroics
The Argentine keeper put in great performances after Bernd Leno went down injured. Martinez was in goal for the majority of Project Restart and helped the Gunners reach their record 14th FA Cup. Even with his great performances, Mikel Arteta still sees Bernd Leno as the number one keeper moving forward, however.
Martinez Has Desire to Play for Arsenal
Martinez has made it clear that he wants to be the first choice keeper and will not accept anything less. In an interview with an Argentine radio station he said: “I need to have more games. That is the only way I will stay at Arsenal.”
Martinez then went onto speak about his love for the club, but also his desire to become the first choice keeper for Argentina. “My target is to consolidate my place with Arsenal and to become the Argentina number one. I won’t stop until I get that and if I don’t play for Arsenal, then clearly, I would move on.”
The player knows what he wants and at this stage of his career, he should be fighting to get it.
A big reason why Arsenal are being forced into a decision on their keeper battle is due to Martinez’s contract. He has two years left on his current deal worth £20,000 per week. Arsenal have delayed offering the 27-year-old improved terms for a number of reasons not limited to the Covid-19 pandemic.
It is understood that Arsenal had an agreement with Martinez’s representatives that any pay rise would be retroactive. Even if Arsenal do decide to sell, they might find themselves paying their departing keeper a bonus because of this.
While Raul Sanllehi was still at the club, he had put a £20 million price tag on Martinez. With the current dip in the market because of the pandemic, however, Arsenal may have to accept lower offers for their number two keeper.
Martinez’s team are hoping the Gunners will accept a bid in the region of £10 million instead. While Martinez has been a great servant to the club over 10 years, letting him go for such a small fee would put Arsenal in a tough spot.
If he goes, Arsenal will have to replace him as they do not see current third choice keeper Matt Macey as a viable backup to Bernd Leno. Macey only has one year left on his contract and Arsenal have no plans to extend the 25-year-old beyond this season.
The worry from a financial standpoint is that Arsenal will just have to spend the money they receive to bring in a backup that fits their standards. Not making a profit off this exchange would not be good for the finances of the club.
First Choice Debate
It has been widely debated as to who the Gunners should offload this summer. Pundits and fans alike have argued over whether Arsenal should sell Leno and extend Martinez.
His love for the club cannot be matched. His 10 year spell has had ups and downs, plus plenty of loan spells. But when Martinez finally got his chance, he took it. He barely put a foot wrong in between the sticks and Arsenal looked solid at the back.
In 23 appearances in all competitions, Martinez allowed 24 goals, while keeping nine clean sheets. Leno played 32 times across all competitions, allowing 41 goals and also keeping nine clean sheets.
The numbers do favour Martinez, but only marginally. It comes down to the fact that Arsenal are confident in Leno’s ability because he has seen more first team action in his career. Martinez has been good, but with a small sample size.
The Athletic reports that teams from England and Spain are keeping an eye on the situation, but no club is yet to submit a formal bid. Real Betis and Valencia are both rumored to be interested.
Embed from Getty Images