Arteta: No regrets over Martinez sale

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Mikel Arteta says the decision to sell Emi Martinez to Aston Villa was taken for a variety of reasons and that he considers it ‘part of the past’ despite questions over the viability of replacement Alex Runarsson.

It’s no secret that the Gunners had a tough choice to make last summer when deciding which of our two keepers to retain. Ultimately, the club kept faith with Bernd Leno and used the £20 million raised from the Argentine’s sale to help fund other transfer business.

One of those deals was the budget-friendly acquisition of Runarsson from French side Dijon.

Signed for £1 million on the advice of keeper coach Inaki Cana, who’d work with him previously in Denmark, the Iceland international represented a calculated risk. Unfortunately, on last night’s showing against Manchester City, he looks a little out of his depth.

Unsurprisingly, the boss was again forced to revisit the thinking behind Martinez’s exit; a topic he’s touched on repeatedly.

“There’s no point having any regrets,” he said in his post-game press conference.

“There’s different reasons why we had to do that transaction. We did it and it’s a part of the past.

“He had a really good few months last season and he really helped us and obviously when our goalkeeper makes an error, these things are going to come up.”

Having spilt a routine free-kick by Riyad Mahrez and shown questionable positioning and distribution during the 4-1 defeat to Manchester City, Runarsson faces an uphill battle to regain the trust of the boss and the fans.

“We win and lose together and Alex has played other games,” said Arteta on the decision to include the new boy for a clash with high-calibre opponents.

“We decided to play him tonight for many reasons and that responsibility is for all of us.”

Now that we’re out of the Carabao Cup and face stiff tests against Newcastle and Benfica in the FA Cup and Europa League respectively, it’s fair to expect that Leno will be playing a lot of games. We can only hope he stays fit.

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Djo

At least we are asured that this “kid” of 25 is not Arsenal level. Loan him out and get another backup keeper… otherwise if Leno gets injured we could well be in relegation battle this season!

Takeshita

100% agree. This lad can’t catch a cold if I am being very honest. Arteta should look for a replacement ASAP.
Moreover, I always thought references worked very well only in the corporate sector, never thought it could get you a job in the EPL and in the most prestigious club like Arsenal. 😁

OdalGooner

Could be? Aren’t we already? *shudders*

backsakacrack

Martinez is big, commanding and confident. Leno might have 300 bundesliga games under his belt but he is not a top premier league keeper. Our league record since he has been restored to number one is absolutely appalling. 4 wins from 14 is case anyone hasn’t noticed.
How can the same defenders plus Gabriel be so much less secure that last summer? One answer: Martinez has gone.
This is a huge reason we are in this situation and i am sick of it constantly getting brushed under the carpet.

gus

i also agree—–leno is just an good shot stopper- he is poor at crosses and corner and does not command his area very well his distribution is average aswell. martinez is as good a shot stopper but has mech better ability at corners etc we are fecked second time around with the gk position– we had a 50million player in sczeney and let him go for 10 and martinez was worth much more yet we failed to see the value apart from securing martinelli i dont really think edu etc know what they are doing its painful beyond belief scrolling… Read more »

Artetas Assistant

And disrespectfully brushed under the carpet “He had a really good few months last season and he really helped us“. Seemed a bit kind of low handed

Tanned arse

Yup and it was an awful call. His leven of performance was consistent and better than what leno had produced in my opinion and was the point where alarm bells started ringing for me. At that point it was looking like a meritocracy wasn’t in place. Since then I think that’s been demonstrated again on numerous occasions.

atom

Emi is the one who said he didn’t want to fight for the #1 jersey but either wanted to be handed it or sold. Emi played really well during the cup run but was also aided by us switching to an ultra defensive style of play during that period. A competition would have made sense but Emi didn’t do enough to simply be handed the #1 spot given Leno has consistently been one of the top keepers in the PL during his time here. HIs agent: “He dreams of being the starting goalkeeper for the national team and he is… Read more »

Matthinc

I just think this accurate, even if we now think Martinez is the real deal! He wasn’t proven. It would have been a gamble, he was demanding to be no.1, didn’t want to fight for his place.

Artetas Assistant

Too bad the person who was seeing him day in day out couldn’t/still can’t appreciate his rare qualities and level too.

Alex

If Martinez was a gamble what is Alex

Atom

Except it’s not. Our issue is we can’t score goals not that we leak them. Martinez who is playing in a far more functional team has virtually identical stats to Leno. Martinez wouldn’t fix what’s wrong with this team – he’s just a preference from a segment of the fan base.

Artetas Assistant

You’re seeing with your eyes open …

GraeB

I think the fact that we leak goals – and often very early or very late – does have an impact on forwards. They are then faced with playing against a defence who can sit deep and shut up shop.

I do agree we don’t create enough chances to score but players with heads down after stupid errors at the back are easy pickings for PL defenders.

Atom

I suggest you read the tactics piece from today – was pretty interesting. The biggest issue is since 2018 Arsenal has spent the majority of time playing from behind. The issue for the defense is if they give up even 1 goal then they know we are so inept offensively we can’t come back. We’re putting enormous pressure on our defense consistently via the way we play. Martinez had a great run in the cup but also clearly benefited from us moving to an ultra defensive counter attacking team during that period. The big issue is that doesn’t work against… Read more »

goldsoundz

In what world is Martinez’s league leading 7 clean sheets the same as Leno’s 3?

atom

This season:
Martinez: goals conceded 13. saves 35.
Leno: goals conceded 18. saves 34.

The goals conceded have moved slightly in favor of Martinez the past couple of games but were even for most of the year.

Also factor in that Martinez hasn’t played a single game against: Sp*ds, Man United, Man City, Liverpool, Chelsea.

Anders Limpar

They beat Liverpool 7-2, he did play that game….

And remember when we used to be on the “Big Six” list….. sigh

Zet

Martinez did very well. But you can’t remove a goalkeeper who is also playing very well before he got injured. Martinez is correct to move out for his own sake. I am more pissed with the fact that the coaches does not even know they have a world class goalkeeper in their squad before the purchase of Leno. What the hell have they been doing.

Tanned arse

He’s a part of that functionality. Communication doesn’t show up on stats and we all heard him in the quiet stadiums. His confidence and authority coming from crosses is probably better than any other keeper in the league. His physicality bravery and decision making when coming off his line genuinely earned us points. At the point of sale he showed us what he was capable of and it was better than leno. Someone made the decision to disregard that and opt for the next best option. That way of thinking makes you weaker both on the football pitch and in… Read more »

Tanned arse

That’s not even mentioning his calmness at receiving balls at feet. The angles he makes and the distribution. He was a major part in progressing from deep. Leno is edgy and plays out slowly and ultimately we lost trust in playing that way

Matthinc

Leno is quality! There’s no need to be knocking him, he really isn’t one of our problems.

atom

If you look at post shot expected goals allowed minus goals allowed per 90 minutes (how many more saves does a keeper make than expected) only Leno, Allison & Guaita have been in the top 6 for 18 – 20. Leno last year was 0.46 which ranked him as the best keeper in the entire PL. I get fans like the intagibles of Martinez (not to mention the story of career backup leads to magical cup run) but the stats say Leno is one of if not the best keeper in the PL the last few years. There’s simply no… Read more »

gus

is that you bernd??

Matthinc

Ha! Very good.

Artetas Assistant

OMG you’re gonna make me cry mehn, you are gonna fucking make me weep! Not to be that guy, but they started thinking of selling him I fucking said the exact thing you said that Emi can’t cost less than 60million. He’s right up there or better than Allison because Allison has had an easier ride to the top while Emihas had to work hard for a decade questioning whether he was good enough and at the triumphing. He’s a rare monster, Arsene Wenger must have cried the day we sold Emi because that was his last legacy to us.… Read more »

Vincent Ives

Ok, but now imagine Martinez with Gabriel & Partey in front of him. I know Leno hasn’t had the luxury of the latter on a consistent basis, but that’s the makings of a top 4-level spine. Even without a playmaker, that kind of defensive security gives you a platform.

Atom

That’s going to be a championship spine the way things are going

Vincent Ives

Look on the bright side! Reading’s a nice away trip, Wycombe would be fun…

Petr Janosik

Very true!

Dave Roberts

Emi has proven his ability as a goalie. We shoulda kept him and let Leno go. However, we also need to remember that last season we were playing with a 3-man defensive line. imo, we should return to that formation.

A P

Better tell Inaki Cana to focus on coaching and not try to get more friends in.

Cultured Determination

But then this wouldnt be us if that were the case. Raul got his pals some deals, edu had some friends, now this guy.
Hey by the way, can we be friends? You know, just in case you decide to apply for a job at the club.

Berlingoon

Absolutely staggering that he didn’t trust him for the euro league group stages in most of the games, when it was clear from the beginning that we won’t have any problems qualifying from that group, regardless the keeper but thought it was a good idea to throw him in in a cup 1/4 final against City.

A P

It doesn’t really matter which keeper plays, does it? We are not going thru either way.

Jelvis

We’ve still got Matt Macey. Haven’t we?

DPK

Macey is going for Ken Friar’s long service record at the club…..
‘Will you still need me, will you still feed me (crosses)
When I’m sixty-four’

Goontang

Yep. And no reason why he shouldn’t get back up position now. Isn’t he older than Runnarson?

allezkev

If the club really felt the need to sign this guy last summer then Matt Macey must be seen as a truly terrible goalkeeper by those inside the club and if that’s the case then why have we kept him for so long?

Public Elneny

There’s no point trying to analyse the squad building decision making at Arsenal. They’re just winging it, rudderless, disorganised, and easily led by outside influences. Taking the easy option while convincing themselves they’ve made the right decision

It’s incredible how a club as big as ours has ended up with a group of executive level staff who have less football vision and understanding than the average fan. But it’s been like that for years now. I guess idiots and craven chancers hire other idiots and chancers lest they shine a light on what they really are

Kroenke out

SharpasFc

Hard to disagree with this. I want to know how Kroenke made his money because he seems like a really poor businessman…did he just marry into money?

arsepedant

Pretty much. His wife is the Walmart heiress.

SharpasFc

He’s Home Grown!

GraeB

We kept Martinez from 2012!

Jimbo1

I don’t think Macey was pulling up any trees when he was loaned to Plymouth. The same can be said for Iliev who is currently at Shrewsbury, but has been dropped to 3rd choice after some iffy performances, including letting in two soft goals against Mk Dons that led to the manager being sacked. Arsenal certainly need to improve in that area as most of the top sides have good quality back ups.

Vincent Ives

In contrast, Reading fans talk about Emi’s recent loan there with the same reverence Brentford fans do Sczeczney’s.

Winston

Don’t we have 5 keepers registered ?
Or were they just names made up to avoid registering Ozil?
Leno Runarsson Macey Mike’s mate Dave, and some Spanish guy called Mercadona

Appels&Pere

I do not understand Artetas decisions.

heihaci

apparently he is a genius

SharpasFc

Other than the fans no one at the club seems to be challenging him. That situation was bad enough for a successful manager such as Wenger but to allow a novice in Arteta to make decisions that are looking increasingly destructive is just a recipe for disaster. We’ve become a club where the term “non-negotiable” applies to absolutely no one…including the Manager and Technical Director et al.

Prakhar

Nothing can save this club if people at adminstrative level making transfers are dumb as fuck.

Twatsloch

That’s it in a nutshell!

OdalGooner

Rich as fuck. They’re not dumb, they just – without a shadow of a doubt – do not have the clubs best interest at heart.

Goontang

Dumb as fuck = cheap as fuck. Runnarson, William, ceballos (to a lessor extent) is the cheap options for positions that we needed to fill. No question Gabriel and Partey were great signings, but they are signings we’ve needed for 10 years.

We Came Here For Partey

Willian cheap? That albatross around our neck will be sucking 200k a week for 3 years. At the end of it no re-sale value and a skewing of the wage structure. Even in form he didn’t warrant that deal. We can’t even claim to be doing things on the cheap with the exception of Runnarson. At best we have been inept handling our money, at worst there is a stench on some of the deals that have been done. If we are re-building what have we got for the future: Tierney, Saka, Martinelli, Gabriel… Saliba is persona non grata, Guendouzi… Read more »

arsepedant

No, he’s on about 100K a week. You’re factoring in the 15M signing bonus he got, which was all paid up front.

Far East Stand

These guys are so inept that they get cheap options at expensive prices.

mjc1892

I wish we could just go back to the days of yonder when you played your number 1 keeper every game unless they were injured. Its not like we’ve got an international level goalkeeper to placate now, it should absolutely be Leno unless our hand is forced.
I agree with Blogs that Runarssson seems to be the worst keeper we’ve ever had, and that’s pretty astonishing.

HenryKamp

West Ham in 03 were relegated with a squad of Joe Cole, Michael Carrick, Jermain Defoe, Glen Johnson, David James, Ian Pearce, Di Canio, Nigel Winterburn, Trevor Sinclair, Freddy Kanoute, Les Ferdinand, Lee Bowyer, Steve Lomas and douard Cisse. No one is too good to go down!

Confused

We let Rambo go for free, swapped Giroud for Luiz then took on Willian…some Sterling player t racing there…give whoever is responsible a rise and a seat on the board

Confused

What’s this “awaiting for approval” shit? You don’t think life’s shitty enough for your fellow gooners as it is?

arseblog

Calm yer tits, Beyonce

Confused

I guess you think your abuse is a reply of some sorts to my question “what’s this awaiting for approval shit”? So you’re gonna block me next? Don’t bother… I can do that myself thank you…ever heard of Groucho Marx?

Gunnerwinalot

Saying “We decided to play him tonight for many reasons and that responsibility is for all of us.” sounds as though he’s trying to offload some of the blame onto others for that decision! He is the manager and the decision is ultimately on his head. There was absolutely no need to ‘rest’ Leno. We may well still have lost but it wouldn’t have been as embarrassing.
For me, 4 points from the next 3 games is the bare minimum otherwise we need to make a change in time for the transfer window.

We Came Here For Partey

Resting Leno was wise if the alternative is Runnarson who is way out of his depth.

SharpasFc

Your wisdom is infinite.

GraeB

We played him because we knew we were going to lose against Citeh (or Spuds or Manure/Everton anyway) and wanted to rest Willian and Luiz for their return against Chelski who will laugh at that business.

Comedian

Coaches job is to make players better not take part in transfer.
Us relying on coaches for scouting report just shows everything wrong about us. Inaki Cana is a good coach…but both his recommendations david raya and alex were abysmal. And its not his fault, he will only recommend those he has worked with while a scouting network has much more wider network and reports.

karl

I thought we sacked all the scouts. The simple rule is that short goalkeepers rarely work. In the EPL you have to be abel to dominate crosses and take a battering.

Jimbo1

His height isn’t the issue. He just can’t catch, can’t dive very far, has slow reflexes and poor positioning. It is not his fault btw, but the club for signing him in the first place.

Public Elneny

The thing is Runarsson isn’t that short – about 6’1″. That’s taller than eg Casillas, Peruzzi, Southall, Shilton and many others who were a big presence in goal – in the case of the latter 3 when ability to deal with high balls was probably even more important than today. Runarsson looks so small mainly because his positioning was horrific, as well as a clear lack of confidence. He is very slightly built for a keeper too The handling error can happen to any keeper – some more than others. But the constantly wrong positioning you just don’t see in… Read more »

Otto von B.

Not sure I agree, but I would prefer we had a tall (6’3+) keeper between the sticks. Runarsson lacks presence more than anything. It’s easy to potshot at individual players, but we should be identifying someone to really challenge the incumbent (Leno in this case) so they up their game that 2 or 3 percent that makes all the difference.
in Runarsson’s defence, he tries, more than can be said for Willian – and that is on Arteta.

karl

Runarrson looks tiny in the goal and half beaten even before he starts his weird positional play. I’m not sure I have ever seen such a gulf between No1 and backup goalkeeper.

Macey is a giant and waiting years for his chance. Surely he can’t be worse than this. Someone needs to push Leno to keep him sharp.

allezkev

I guess it has everything with this obsession with playing a sweeper keeper because Runarsson seems quite good with his feet and maybe Macey is more in the Petr Cech mode? The issue isn’t Runarssons feet though it’s his hands….

JBF

His feet are pretty questionable too!

karl

Sweeper keeper is currently in vogue, but for that you have the get the basics right first.

No point be an auxiliary outfield player if you can’t dominate the area or even reliably catch.

Don Cazorleone

“sweeper keepers” and “playing out from the back” can both get in the sea

SharpasFc

As much as I’ve backed Arteta I have to question why he allowed Runarsson to start in goal…surely he rewatches the games we play and if he didn’t realise by watching Alex in goal against Dundalk that he wasn’t up to the standard of a backup GK for Arsenal then the decision to start him against Man City is either woefully naive, borderline delusional or criminally insane.

Vonnie

Is that why he likes to come out and stand near the centre?

Roof_attack

i have no faith in the transfer policy changing while MA and Edu are in charge. We need to look at the lower leagues for rough diamonds and cheaper prices and performance related pay structures. Not all of those will work out , but at least we dont sink millions on them. Fair play to what Brentford are doing on that front. We could do with taking a leaf out of their book!

SarcasmB0t

Honestly, we should just buy Brentford.

SharpasFc

I thought we were becoming Brentford…we’ve taken their GK coach and their set piece coach…meanwhile if things carry on the way they are they’ll be taking out place in the PL and we’ll be taking their place in the Championship.

Vincent Ives

100%, and after Brexit that becomes even more accurate. The lower domestic leagues & South America is where we’ll see a lot of focus.

Samir Desai

Sack em all

Goodebemeyang

The selection is absolutely baffling. It wasn’t clear what Arteta expected from this game. If you’re playing Gabriel and Martinelli, pillars on whose performances we can avoid relegation, it means this game is very important to you, well in that case why are you playing Runarrson who you don’t really rate? A bad keeper can undo all the hardwork of your best players. So in the end we have now a broken Martinelli and lost the game. And don’t even get me started on the Mustafi decision.

The spoon

Surely, as a club the size of Arsenal, you don’t buy a keeper for a million quid, who isn’t even first choice at a sub par French club. And when they had him over to sign the contract, when he couldn’t keep hold of the pen, surely that mustve raised a red flag. Selling Martinez was fine, we got an ol fee for a change, but we should have got a decent back up. I hope we go out and get Nick Pope in the summer if Burnley go down. Or even if not.

Dom47

We could also go down 🙂

aberinkula

Slightly misleading headline, Blogs. “There’s no point having any regrets” is very different to “no regrets”.

nikoniko

when we questioned the sale of Martinez, peeps here were all over our necks. When we said records started tumbling(albeit negatively) as soon as the first loss, the delusion bout Arteta was real. Chicken are back home to roost

Goodebemeyang

Even Dijon duped the great Arsenal Football Club of 2mil. Edu is so incompetent, it’s shocking.

Goldfingered

The worst piece of business we made in the summer was selling Emi. The defence looked much more coherent and drilled when Emi were barking orders. As soon as Leno came back the mistakes came back and we look much more insecure. Emi is also better with his feets, has a wider range of passing and strikes the ball harder. I find that a bit remarkable that we sell the keeper that would suit us the best as we keep playing out of defence. I rate Leno and he’s a great keeper but Emi is a leader and had the… Read more »

Rosa

Emi is absolutely the type of player we need. As well as being a fabulous goalkeeper, he’s a leader: remember “David, David where the f**k are you going”?

Andy

The stuff with Emi is a red herring. If had stayed as No. 1, Leno would have gone and we would be in the same situation with a rookie as No. 2.

Berlingoon

he’s got a contract and unless we’re deciding to sell him, he’s going nowhere. Would have let fight them for the number 1 spot this season, chose who to keep after the season and get Fabianski back as a free agent as back up.

Vincent Ives

If we’d received any bids in the same ball park for Leno, he’d have gone. We didn’t get any.

Francesc

Martinez is as good as Leno. So nothing wrong in selling him as such.

But what Martinez further brings to the table is his confidence and swagger, which leno lacks. So that’s where Martinez becomes better.

Vincent Ives

Exactly, so much of goalkeeping is about presence.

Francesc

Arteta needs to go, not because he is bad but these weak players have stopped responding to him.

But who can replace him and more than that who would want to come to arsenal? Rodgers? Allegri? There’s no one really

SharpasFc

Why would Brendan Rodgers come to Arsenal when his team are 2nd in the League and we are 15th?

The_Golden_Wrigglesworth

Fun fact: even if the lowest reported figures for Willian’s wages are true (125k p/w, which would equate to about 19.5m over 3 years), the club would have profited more from simply not signing Willian than from selling Martinez (given the additional costs for Willian’s signing on fee and the Runnarsson transfer). Actually, if you add that pile of Willians to the amount of money wasted on loan fees, wages, transfer costs, and who knows what else for Cedric and Pablo Mari plus the money lost by not selling Xhaka last January and Lacazette over the summer when there were… Read more »

Dom47

Excellent analysis, staggering how amateurish we look with such business!

Vincent Ives

All the relegation talk is a bit far-fetched, but if we had another Maupay incident and Leno was out for an extended period? That changes the picture significantly. The fact we’re happy to roll the dice on that is staggering.

As it stands relegation remains a reality. Burnley have a game in hand amd the senior players are obviously not playing for Arteta anymore.

Here’s what our current form is projecting:

In the last 5 seasons. Apparently, only 2 teams that had 13 points on Match Day 12 were not relegated. Those were Chelsea and Everton. The common factor between those two teams was a managerial change

Vincent Ives

Wait, do you mean specifically 13 points after 12 games? Because after Match Day 12 last season West Ham had 13 points, Villa had 11, and Saints a paltry 8! All three stayed up, only one changed their manager and the other two have beaten us in recent weeks…

I’m not saying relegation isn’t a possibility – it’s more realistic than finishing in the top 4 – but it’s also not a mathematical likelihood.

Primislas

Arsenal has displayed bottom 3 form over last 12 league games. Do you see the team getting 40 points with Arteta in charge at this rate?

Vincent Ives

Literally ‘at this rate’? Yeah, if 14 points from 13 games is the rate, almost exactly 40 points. But Partey coming back changes significantly, ditto Martinelli, and in theory we have better resources than the handful of teams below us (still feels weird thinking in those terms). But an injury to Leno or Gabriel is a terrifying thought.

Primislas

It’s in 14 games. And if you remove the first 2 games things start looking particularly dire. What’s terrifying is that the lot that got the squad to where it is now needs to make at least one decent signing in January to turn the season around.

Vincent Ives

Sorry, I didn’t intentionally botch the math there. Agreed on the signing though, it needs to be someone that can have the immediate impact that Fernandes did for United. I can’t believe they only signed him in January of this year, it feels like he’s been scoring cheap penalties for them for a decade.

heihaci

Edu and Arteta=tweedle dum and tweedle dee. The sooner they are out of the club the better. Emery was sacked and Raul for failing to do their job do why are these two clowns still here?

Frankie

No regrets over selling Martinez is he being serious… the guy filled me with confidence when he played… now we have the ball boy in goal…

GraeB

He didn’t say No regrets but No point in regrets which is true. It wasn’t a case of keeping both because one or other would have gone without first team guarantees. Sale gave us Partey, which was what we needed.

The regret should be believing a new coach in selecting a replacement. Was it because Macy also wants away?

Biggles

We needed the money and, regrettably, Martinez was one of the few “saleable” assets we had to raise the dosh. The failure to shift many of the passengers in the squad in the last window is evidence of this. That said, Runarsson had shown by his comments shortly after joining the club that he was far too confident – everyone needs to be confident of course, but he was clearly over-confident – and his errors against City yesterday merely underlined this. Of the two, Martinez was/is obviously far the better keeper but when needs must etc.

MojoWillneny

Hard to get mad at Runnarsson, he’s a League two quality player whose been mistakenly thrust into the role of a Premier League-quality keeper.

Be easier to get a dog to meow than to get him to perform at Premier League level.

More to worry about in terms of evidence of a comprehensive plan at the club going forward.

CarlosLA

Just came here to say great column by Lewis today.

If Arsenal mgt really don’t understand that game state matters, then yowza, more and more amateur stuff.

Faxe

“Unfortunately, on last night’s showing against Manchester City, he looks a little out of his depth.” That’s a polite way to say he had a shit game yesterday. Also, can we please not throw him under the bus based on one shit game?

SaulGoodmanLMK

Did you see him in Europa , he didn’t instil much confidence in me there against significantly weaker opposition , bad deal regardless of his cost.

He's got no hair but we don't care...

Yes I know the politics as to why a manager has to say this but I still struggle with the utter bollocks of it. Oh we wish to hear “yep, it would have been better if we hadn’t sold him as he’s better than this new guy”

Mack

“no point having any regrets” is markedly different from “no regrets”

ATS

I have to say that while he looked out of his depth he did also make a good save in the second half when it looked a sure thing Jesus would score.

I don’t doubt he’s had better moments than las night, but even experienced keepers make mistakes so I’d begrudge killing his confidence after one start. Here’s hoping he shows far better form if we do need to call on him again – for himself as much as the team.

ASH

No team in the world will pay 20 mn for Leno. And that is the only reason for sale of Martinez as Aston Villa paid 20mn for him.

We are selling the saleable, and hoarding the undesirables. Sad indictment for our transfer policy.

Danny

I miss Emi. I wish him well and hope he’s happy at Villa. He was a loyal club servant and he deserves all the good things coming to him. As for the decision to sell, no comment.

Santori

The martinez sale is indicative of our desperation bc we did not have the know how to move on a whole team of unwanted players and had to find other means of generating income. We had Mustafi, Sokratis, Holding or Chambers, Torreira, Ozil, Kolasina, even either Nketiah or Balogun for starters all needing to be moved to generate income. Arguably even AMN. Instead we could move none. Thereby we had to recourse to next best thing which was to consider selling a prize asset. …that fell on a selection between Bellerin or Martinez. As I mentioned, jury was still out… Read more »

Santori

And had we executed our summer plans better, we would not have had to sell Martinez. At this point, may as well use Macey or Iliev. Runnarson looks like a Kepa, some barely out of school keeper thrown into a level too high for him. maybe he may get better but it’ll cost us at our expense (in points) meanwhile. He doesn’t even have the size IMO, looks so unsure. BOTH second and third goals were wholly on him. Poor handling for the first one, commentator was mentioning he needed to ‘find his feet’, I think he needs to find… Read more »

Cowadunga

No regrets? No reason to look back? ACCOUNTABILITY???

Cowadunga

Arteta is an arrogant cunt

Vonnie

There are some decisions that are made selling players that I may disagree with but they don’t really bother me. Selling Emi cut to the quick, and I still can’t forgive them for doing it, and every time I see him in that Aston Villa shirt it makes me feel sick. Emi is a better goalkeeper than Leno in every respect, he’s a huge personality and he was true leader and popular person in the team. Maybe he was another player with too much personality for Mikel.

ifan

selling Martinez was the big mistake of Arteta and the dumbness of BOD to raise the fund …Martinez was the power key of success when Arsenal beat Liverpool & big teams..so if the BOD dont realize that huge mistake Arsenal will deserve relegation

Santori

Now news is Edu is going for Vinicius Jr (Maybe Erickson, whoever we don’t have to pay money for)

Isco apparently rejected us for potential Juve move.

They are just grabbing at straws.

There is no long term plan on qualitative assessment with experienced heads like Caggigao gone.

Recipe for further disaster.

The sooner they can get Allegri and he can say pull in Dybala the better.

Gabrigoal

It’s obviously a mistake in hindsight. But also was the fact that he was a homegrown quota considered? We should have commanded a higher fee and we could have negotiated with Martinez to ensure he is happy as a goalkeeper at the club. Starting him as first keeper until he makes a mistake wouldn’t be that hard would it? Instead we spent 40m incl wages on Willian who has several players vying for his position…. Had we gone for Aouar instead of Willian, we could have spent an extra 20m but we would have had a minimum 40m transfer fee… Read more »

Gabrigoal

The accurate kicking from Martinez was the difference between this season and last.

It actually was a huge part of our buildup play. How often did you see him hit it directly to Saka or Auba almost in the opposition third.

Cannot deny that it was one of the ways we could stretch the game vertically and discourage such high pressing from opposition teams