Petr Cech has tipped third-choice Arsenal goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez to be a success at the north London club.
Martinez, 24, began his career at Argentina’s Independiente before joining the youth academy at Arsenal in 2010 and has enjoyed a stint of loan spells in the Football League as he vies for his chance under Arsene Wenger having only made four Premier League appearances for the Gunners.
Despite being down the pecking order behind Cech and David Ospina, Arsenal’s No.1 stopper has tipped Martinez to have a long future at the club.
‘He’s been here for a few years now and I would say that you can see his progress,’said Cech. ‘Having gone on loan a few times and having proved that he has the ability to play at this level – it’s been a learning experience for him as well.
‘For a player that is not playing as much, he is always ready. I think that he enjoys the game and he is that person you know you can always put him in and rely that he will give you the performance you expect,’ Cech added.
‘I think that’s a big asset for a goalkeeper because you need to know that your goalkeeper is there every day.
‘As a group we work very closely, we try to help each other and we try to improve every day,’ he continued.
Given the wealth of goalkeepers currently available to Wenger, 34-year-old Cech has urged Martinez to learn his trade from the experience around him on the training pitch.
‘Even me, I can learn from David, I can learn from Emi and they can learn from me,’ he said.
‘It is kind of like a three-way, together with Matt Macey, who comes in. I think we created a very good and tight group and working with these guys has been a pleasure.’
The latest seal of approval comes after manager Wenger somewhat surprisingly backed the Argentine to one day go on and become Arsenal’s No.1: ‘He is No. 3 at the moment, but he has the potential to be No. 1,’ he said.
Martinez, with the words of praise ringing in his ears, asserted his determination to succeed at the Emirates after signing a new deal.
He said: ‘This is my club – it’s where I really grew up and I want to take the No.1 shirt during my time here. I won’t stop until I get it.
‘Arsenal means everything to me. I grew up here, I learnt English here and I’ve got everything in the UK.’