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'Wenger told me': £47,000-a-week player admits he didn't want to join Arsenal

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Emiliano Martinez has been speaking to the media (once again) about Arsenal, despite leaving for Aston Villa last September.

The £47,000-a-week glovesman was interviewed by EL PAÍS, who quizzed the Argentine on a range of different topics.

One topic discussed by Martinez was his decision to leave Independiente for Arsenal back in 2010, where he made an interesting revelation.

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What did Emiliano Martinez say?

The 29-year-old said: “The decision was more for them [family] than anything else. I didn’t want to go. I did not know the language. Wenger told me that the goalkeeper had to speak in English. When something gets into my head, I do it. In a year I learned to speak English.”

Well, not many young footballers would’ve been against moving to Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal back in the day!

Martinez was clearly quite content in Argentina, but felt the need to move for the greater good of his family, which is admirable in truth.

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Sadly, it took him a while to see first-team action, although it has all paid off for the shot-stopper as he’s now one of the best in England.

It takes courage to leave your homeland for a club of Arsenal’s stature as a teenager, so Martinez deserves real credit for doing so.

Arsenal developed Emiliano Martinez for nothing

Martinez spent ten years at Arsenal, and just as he was starting to prove himself, the Gunners sold him to Aston Villa.

Last season, only Ederson and Edouard Mendy kept more than his 15 clean sheets in the Premier League.

In our view, you have to ask: was it worth it for Arsenal?

The north Londoners organised six loan spells for Martinez during that decade, and obviously developed him at London Colney too.

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A decade’s worth of nurturing, and Arsenal only have £17m to show for it, and a significantly inferior goalkeeper as their No.1 in Bernd Leno.

Yes, £17m isn’t a small amount.

However, at 29, Martinez can easily be Aston Villa’s No.1 for at least the next six years, so they’ll get value for their money.

Ironically, Arsenal just spent £30m on Aaron Ramsdale to compete with Leno, so that £17m – and more – has already gone.

When you mention mismanagement of players, this has to be right up there as a prime example.

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