It is certainly been a good November for us loyal Arsenal fans as we have been hearing about lots of our players coming out with pledges of loyalty, as well as, like Bellerin and Koscielny, signing new contracts in this supposedly bad month.
Well we now have another one to add to this list, as the Argentinian goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez has also added a long extension to his contract. And be in no doubt he is a star. He is playing in all the League Cup games this season and was outstanding against Reading. He will be the long term replacement for Petr Cech and David Ospina, as Arsene Wenger made clear. “If you look at him, I personally see all the top qualities that a goalkeeper needs,” Le Prof said.
“He has the stature, he has the passion, he has the technical quality, he has the decision-making, he has huge power and he’s not frightened of anything.
“I remember a game at Anderlecht in the Champions League – it was a decisive game where he saved us. In the League Cup, every time he plays, he does extremely well. I am very happy that he committed, because I think he is the future goalkeeper at this club.”
I think that we can safely now say that Wojciech Szczesny (who?) will not now be returning to club next season, or any other season in the future. Emi has already proved he is excellent, and even Petr Cech had nothing but good words to say about him. “He’s been here for a few years now and I would say that you can see his progress,” Cech said.
“Having gone on loan a few times and having proved that he has the ability to play at this level – it’s been a learning experience for him as well.
“For a player that is not playing as much, he is always ready. I think that he enjoys the game and he is that person you know you can always put him in and rely that he will give you the performance you expect.
“I think that’s a big asset for a goalkeeper because you need to know that your goalkeeper is there every day.”
Cech, Martinez and David Ospina have played across three competitions this season – and the former believes the dynamic between them is productive and has driven them all to improve.
“As a group we work very closely, we try to help each other and we try to improve every day,” he added.
“Even me, I can learn from David, I can learn from Emi and they can learn from me.
“It is kind of like a three-way, together with Matt Macey, who comes in. I think we created a very good and tight group and working with these guys has been a pleasure.”
I think it is a great idea of Wenger’s to have a different goalkeeper for each competition, as we will now have a brilliant and experienced backup in case Cech or Ospina get an injury. Martinez has already played 10 first team games for the Gunners and will not be feeling the added pressure that youngsters normally get when called into action.
Our goalkeeping will be in safe hands for the forseeable future.