Brighton are now in the race to sign Emi Martinez, who is out of the Arsenal squad to face Fulham in the Premier League opener today.

LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 15: Emiliano Martinez of Arsenal warms up ahead of the Premier League match between Arsenal FC and Liverpool FC at Emirates Stadium on July 15, 2020 in London, England.(Photo by Paul Childs/Pool via Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND: Emiliano Martinez of Arsenal warms up ahead of the Premier League match on July 15, 2020. (Photo by Paul Childs/Pool via Getty Images)

Brighton are the latest club to join the race for Emi Martinez this window. Martinez isn’t in the Arsenal squad to face Fulham at Craven Cottage for the Gunners’ Premier League opener, as he prepares to leave imminently.

Goal reported on Friday that Brighton recently joined Aston Villa in the race for the goalkeeper. Villa were previously the front-runners for Martinez’s signature, placing two bids for the 28-year-old. However, neither quite met Arsenal’s £20m valuation.

The second bid was the closest to the full £20m, but only after add-ons and bonuses. Brighton then came in with an offer that exceeded both of the previous bids. Villa are still confident and planning to return with a third of their own.

James Benge posted the same update on Twitter, adding that Villa and Brighton are both offering personal terms agreeable to Martinez.

The result is that Martinez won’t play a part in Arsenal’s first game of the season. It’s probably not easy for him to focus right now, and you don’t want to risk an injury or major error hurting his valuation.

Arsenal reportedly reluctantly decided to sell Martinez earlier this week. At this point, it’s just about finding the best deal for player and club.

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Arsenal fan since a young age, now a season ticket holder who enjoys writing, tweeting and making videos about the Gunners.