With Arsenal facing Aston Villa in the Premier League on Sunday evening, Mikel Arteta has outlined the reasons for selling them goalkeeper Emi Martínez in the summer.
The Argentine had a superb end to the season, after he replaced the injured Bernd Leno. He helped them win the FA Cup, and many fans wanted him to stay and take over the number one jersey from the German.
However, Arteta always insisted that when Leno was fit again, he was his preferred keeper, and not content with once again taking his place on the bench, he wanted to leave. The Spaniard said “We have to make the right choices in the market and obviously, I couldn’t guarantee him to be the number one.
Martínez also wanted to play for Argentina and knew that he needed to be playing regular first-team football to do that.
Arsenal sold Martínez to Villa for £20 million in the summer, money which helped to balance the books. In an ideal world they would have liked to keep the 27-year-old, but circumstances dictated otherwise.
Andy is an exiled English football fan living in Cyprus. He loves all sports but football is his abiding passion, and he still has dreams every now and then about scoring the winning goal in a Wembley Cup Final, even though his playing days are long gone. He follows most major leagues, across Europe at least, and has a favoured team in each. When he’s not watching, listening, reading or downloading podcasts about football, he spend his time worrying about his beloved Arsenal.