Emi Martinez would like to stay with Arsenal but he has plenty of interest from elsewhere and has one demand the club need to meet.
Speaking to Marca this week, Emi Martinez confirmed interest from as many as 10 clubs across Europe. The goalkeeper is evidently keen to feature more often for Arsenal if he sticks around, and he’s not afraid to make that point publicly.
“I want to stay at Arsenal, but only if I play more minutes,” Martinez said.
“I am in the crosshairs of 10 teams across Europe. But I can’t say who those clubs are, because it’s nothing concrete. I still do not have a clear situation with Arsenal, when I have it when I return I will make the best decision for my career.”
Coming from some players, I think these comments would rub fans the wrong way. No supporter wants to feel like their players are using outside interest as leverage to get their own way.
In Martinez’s case, however, I think it’s understandable. This is a player who stuck with Arsenal for 10 years before really getting a proper chance. A 27-year-old who finally has some positive media buzz around his performances.
Even though it would be in Arsenal’s best interest for Martinez to just accept whatever role he gets and extend his contract, it’s not really fair to ask him to return to that situation without any hint that his recent displays put him in some kind of contention for Premier League starts.
Mikel Arteta needs to convince Martinez he’s just going to play the goalkeeper in form. No more protected status as number one, just pick the guy who deserves it. You’d hope that would be enough to convince the Argentine shot-stopper to stay.