Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Emery coy on who will play in goal against Qarabag

The hamstring injury sustained by Petr Cech that will keep him out for up to four weeks means that Bernd Leno is now our first choice for the Premier League.

Having cut his teeth in the Europa League and Carabao Cup, the question now is whether Unai Emery will risk him for tonight’s game against Qarabag.

Interestingly, Arsenal brought two other goalkeepers to Azerbaijan – Emi Martinez and Dejan Iliev – but it’s the Spaniard Argentine who is likely to be considered for a starting spot if the boss decides he has to keep Leno safe for the league.

However, he was giving nothing away in press conference yesterday when asked which of the two would be starting the game.

“The best idea is to think only of the match tomorrow and with the respect for this competition because we want, at the end, to finish first in the group,” he said.

“We want to win tomorrow with the best players for playing. We are very happy with Leno and I want to then give him confidence to continue playing. Emi Martinez also can play.

“We will tell the players the first XI but today I want every player thinking that they will play tomorrow to help us to win this match.”

So, will he give Martinez his first Arsenal start since April 2017 when we lost 3-0 to Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park, or stick with the £22.5m signing and let him continue his progression into the first team?

Who would you pick?

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The style of play we are trying to adopt relies alot on the keeper too. It would be useful for as many outfield players to get the patterns of play locked down before a premier league game. Since Leno is a good distributor and comfortable under pressure in possession.

Also an opportunity to try other things as opposition scouts from the premier league may not be in attendance.


What is your point then?


I really wonder why Martinez is still at the club. He’s got such minimal experience for his age that you’d think we’d be better off investing time and resources in a younger similarly experienced keeper.


Then again just a couple of years ago I said the same about Ospina blocking Martinez


He is good on training ground.


It’s probably more to do with low wages


Do Argentines count as ‘Spaniards’?


I would start Martinez. Unless Emery feels that Leno needs to get to know the defence better, but chances are the defense won’t be tested too much anyway.

Isn’t Matrinez from Argentina?

Bai Blagoi

Emi is not a Spaniard.

Ivan Drago

I’d normally go with the backup keeper to start, but since Leno has made the trip I reckon he should to build up match fitness


I picked young Keown.


Personally think we should start Leno.

He needs to keep the positive momentum and continue his understanding of the team in a competitive match. There will be other opportunities for Martinez.


Yeah at another club most likely

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