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'He's just been a brilliant signing': Jamie Carragher hails player Arsenal offloaded last year

Emiliano Martinez, who swapped Arsenal for Aston Villa last year, has been praised by Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher, who said he’s been a “brilliant” signing for the Villans.

The 28-year-old, who spent 10 years on the Gunners’ books, swapped the Emirates Stadium for Villa Park in a reported £20million deal last summer.

Martinez, who was a deputy for much of his time at Arsenal, excelled in the absence of Bernd Leno at the tail end of last season and in the Community Shield at the start of 2020-21.

(Photo by Neville Williams/Aston Villa FC via Getty Images)

However, a desire for regular first-team football and winning caps for Argentina led to the player seeking first-team action elsewhere, culminating in a move to the West Midlands side.

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Martinez has been nothing short of sensational for Dean Smith’s outfit, helping them remain in contention for a top-half finish.

His efforts led to Carragher naming him in his Premier League Team of the Season ahead of Manchester City’s Ederson and Chelsea’s Edouard Mendy.

“It would have been easy to go for Ederson in goal, he’s got the most clean sheets, but I think he’s had very little to do because City’s back four has been so strong,” he told Sky Sports.

“But if I think of a team who almost went down to a comfortable top-10 team, Aston Villa, their goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez jumps to mind.

“He’s had 17 clean sheets, the best saves-to-shots ratio in the league and he’s just been a brilliant signing and one of the top goalkeepers in the league.”

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Great reading for Villa fans, not so good for Arsenal supporters, who’ve endured the most disappointing and underwhelming of seasons where almost everything that could’ve gone wrong has gone wrong.

Leno is normally a top keeper but he’s endured some shaky moments this season, while the player who was offloaded by the Gunners as they favoured Leno over him has gone on to shine for his new club.

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