Former Arsenal captain Tony Adams has questioned the club’s decision to sell Emi Martinez, and also criticised Gunners number one Bernd Leno.
Arsenal lost their 100% record for the 2020/21 season last night, losing 3-1 to Liverpool at Anfield in the Premier League.
Mikel Arteta’s side went ahead rather fortuitously through Alexandre Lacazette, but the Reds hit back through Andy Robertson and Sadio Mane, with new signing Diogo Jota wrapping up the points late on.
Liverpool were deserved winners, and it was a result that has somewhat brought Arsenal back down to earth a little after their solid start.
There were some iffy moments in the game at the back for Arsenal, and Adams expressed his concerns about £19 million signing Leno (BBC Sport) afterwards.
He said on Stadium Astro: “Martinez was incredible in their cup run. He was absolutely sensational. And I do like big ones and what Leno does struggle with, for me, is crosses and stuff.
“I don’t believe that he’s a top-four goalkeeper, for me.
“Martinez, it was coincidence, everything fell into place for Arsenal in the cup competition last year, it was like it was written in the stars.
“This goalkeeper (Martinez) comes in – been at the club for 10 years and not played 10 games – and he stops everything! He was a man possessed, he was absolutely incredible.”
Following his £20 million exit, Martinez has started life at Aston Villa with a bang, saving a penalty against Sheffield United and keeping back-to-back clean sheets.
TBR’s View – Martinez form will be uncomfortable viewing
Leno has not had a bad start to the new season by any means, but Martinez’s first couple of games for Villa have been highly impressive.
His save late on from Joe Bryan against Fulham was superb, and his general command of his area has been impressive.
Adams is perhaps being a little harsh in his assessment of Leno. He may not be the best distributor or most dominant aerially, but his actual shot-stopping ability is bettered by very few.