Arsenal recorded a fine 3-0 victory over Eintracht Frankfurt in Thursday’s Europa League encounter with the Gunners’ second choice goalkeeper Emi Martinez having enjoyed an evening to remember.
The Argentine stopper, who made his first start of the season in Germany, claimed seven saves to help Unai Emery’s side preserve a rare clean sheet behind a new-look back four.
Speaking to the press after the match as monitored by Soccernet.ng, Martinez expressed his delight with the rest of the team whose efforts yielded a most welcomed victory in Frankfurt.
“It was difficult to come here. Frankfurt are like us because they look like a Champions League team, and the atmosphere is top here. They really pressed up really high in the first 15 to 20 minutes.
“I thought we defended really well. The back four and midfielders stuck together the whole game and we had some clear chances to score in the first half. In the second half, we managed to take them.
“We’re over the moon with the back four because I thought we defended really well. We knew they were going to be strong in the air from crosses and we defended really well. It was a good performance.
The 27-year-old then revealed the key to an Arsenal victory against a tough opponent in an intimidating stadium.
“We said before the game that we had to stick together. We worked to make sure we kept the clean sheet. The back four were talking all the time and saying, ‘Clean sheet, clean sheet’, even when we scored the first goal.
“We need to build on that, keep more clean sheets and we know that we can create loads of chances with Pepe, Auba, Bukayo and Martinelli. They’re really good going forward so we have to stick together to keep more clean sheets.
A bunch of talented youngsters are making their way up the Arsenal first team with Bukayo Saka the latest prodigy to stake his claim for a regular run in the senior squad.
The 18-year-old, who is of Nigerian descent, was the star of the show in Frankfurt as he produced a man-of-the-match performance on a dream night in Europe. Saka had a hand in all of Arsenal’s three goals, scoring a fine curling shot as well as supplying the assists to Joe Willock’s and Auba’s goals.
Martinez can see Bukayo Saka and his other teen mates grow to become big stars in the Premier League.
“We spoke before the game and we know we’re the youngest team in the Premier League. We were very young going forward today.
“Auba was up front and then we had Emile and Bukayo on the wings. They’re so talented those two guys, and with Martinelli as well, Willock, Nelson… if we help them settle in the team, they’ll probably be the best wingers in the league.”
The shot stopper made seven crucial saves to keep Frankfurt at bay as the hosts sought desperately for a goal to get them back in the game. Martinez was pleased with his own performance.
“I had a really good second half of the season with Reading and I started pre-season really well. I came to pre-season training early to make sure I was ready for Arsenal.
“I had a good pre-season, I waited for my chance and when I got it the manager chose me in this difficult game away from home, and I just wanted to keep the clean sheet to make sure the back four is solid with me.”