Emiliano Martinez has suggested he may leave Arsenal in a surprising twist to the goalkeeper’s future.
Martinez has been with the Gunners for a decade, but has made only 15 Premier League appearances. However, more than half of those came this season, as he replaced Bernd Leno for the final stretch of the campaign.
The Argentine shot-stopper largely impressed when given his chance, and was a member of the starting lineup when Arsenal beat Chelsea to win the FA Cup.
Even before that piece of silverware, reports indicated that Arsenal would show faith in the 27-year-old. Martinez is out of contract in 2022, but could be rewarded for his rise to the number one spot.
However, Martinez has now thrown his future into doubt by hinting that he could still ask to leave the club if they can’t guarantee he will remain first choice.
“I have shown the club that I can play for them and when I return next season I need to have more games,” Martinez told Continental in his homeland (via The Mirror).
“That is the only way I will stay at Arsenal.
“My target is to consolidate my place with Arsenal and to reach the Argentinian national team as number one.
“I won’t stop until I get that and if I don’t play for Arsenal, then clearly I would move on.”
MARTINEZ LINKED WITH LEEDS
Martinez’s comments will be of interest to Leeds United, who are among the clubs interested in him.
Back in June, reports revealed that Leeds had identified the Argentine as a possible reinforcement in goal. Kiko Casilla has struggled to fully convince, so the Whites are considering replacements ahead of their return to the Premier League.
Martinez’s promotion to the starting role at Arsenal put those plans into question. However, his latest comments suggest he is still weighing up his future.
Martinez has spent his entire professional career under contract at Arsenal, even though he has been loaned out on several occasions.
He has also previously opened the door to a return to Independiente in Argentina. He came through their youth ranks before moving to Europe.
“If there’s one club I’d go to in Argentina, it’s Independiente,” he said in May.
“I’d never say no to them; I’m very grateful.
“I always had the bitter taste of not being able to make my debut in Primera before going to Europe.”