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Key player Left Out of Arsenal Squad for Premier League Opener

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Arsenal goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez has been left out of the squad ahead of their opening Premier League fixture at Fulham, with Brighton now joining Aston Villa in the race to sign him.

Martinez started Arsenal’s final eight Premier League games of the season after regular number one Bernd Leno sustained a knee injury, putting in a string of impressive performances.

Emiliano Martinez

Those displays have peaked the interest of a number of Premier League sides and interest has now manifested into a bidding war – with the Guardian reporting that he won’t be a part of the team that travels to Craven Cottage.

Aston Villa have been favourites to land the 28-year-old and had a £15m bid rejected last week, but they now face competition from Brighton, who are said to have ‘exceeded’ Villa’s offer. Arsenal value Martinez at around £20m, but transfer talks are now ongoing between the interested parties.

A taste of first team football appears to have convinced Martinez that is long-term future is best suited to leaving the Emirates Stadium, after many loan spells away from the club and years of being an understudy.

Arsenal seem convinced that Martinez will be on his way out and have subsequently opened talks with Brentford over a move for keeper David Raya.

Were Martinez to leave Arsenal, his departure would bring to an end a ten-year stay with the club. He joined the Gunners in 2010 and has spent the majority of his senior career out on loan within different levels of the football league, but will leave Arsenal on a high after an impressive stint post-lockdown – one that has earned him an FA Cup medal and Community Shield victory.

It’s unclear who Martinez would prefer to join, but with Mat Ryan firmly established as Brighton’s number one goalkeeper, Villa’s greater need may put them in pole position.

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