Emiliano Martínez Biography

Damián Emiliano Martinez Romero is an Argentine professional footballer who currently plays goalkeeper for the Premier League club Aston Villa as well as the Argentina national team. He was born on September 2, 1992 in Argentina.

Before making the move to Arsenal in 2010, Martnez worked his way up through the youth ranks of Independiente. After serving as an understudy at Arsenal and being loaned out to a number of English clubs, he finally broke into the starting lineup in 2019, which contributed to the club’s success in winning the FA Cup and the FA Community Shield. Martinez made the move to Aston Villa, another club in the Premier League, in September of 2020 in a deal that was worth twenty million pounds. He set a new record for the club by posting 15 clean sheets in the Premier League during his first season with the organization.

Martinez is a former member of the Argentine national under-17 and under-20 youth soccer teams. He has competed at the international level. He made his debut with the senior national team in 2021, the same year that he helped his country win the 2021 Copa América and was awarded the Golden Glove by the latter for keeping a clean sheet in the championship match.

Club career 


Martinez began his career by playing for the youth team of Independiente. Shortly after his 17th birthday, he was invited to try out for Arsenal and was initially offered a youth contract with the club. Martinez was born in Mar del Plata.


2012–19: Loan moves and fringe appearances 

Martinez went on emergency loan to Oxford United after injuries to Ryan Clarke and Wayne Brown, as well as the termination of Connor Ripley’s loan. He made his debut in the English Football League in their final game of the season on May 5, 2012, against Port Vale in League Two;  Port Vale won 3–0.   Later on in that year, Martinez was given a spot on the substitute bench for Arsenal’s games against Stoke City (held on the 26th of August) and Liverpool (held on the 2nd of September) as a replacement for Wojciech Szczsny and ukasz Fabiaski, respectively, who were both sidelined with injuries. On September 26, he made his debut for Arsenal in a home win against Coventry City in the third round of the League Cup. The game ended with a score of 6-1.   He appeared for the second time for Arsenal in the following round, which was a 7–5 victory away at Reading.  After that, Martnez moved to Championship side Sheffield Wednesday on an emergency loan for the duration of 28 days on October 15, 2013.   On November 23, he made his debut for Wednesday, playing against Huddersfield Town, one of Wednesday’s rivals in Yorkshire. Martinez’s loan was ultimately extended through the remainder of the current campaign.

After making his return to Arsenal, Martnez was not used as a substitute during Arsenal’s victory in the Community Shield match against Manchester City on August 10, 2014, at Wembley Stadium. Arsenal defeated Manchester City by a score of 3-0.


Soon after that, he made his debut in the Champions League by assisting Arsenal in their group stage victory over Anderlecht by a score of 2–1.

After that, he made his debut in the Premier League on November 22 against Manchester United at the Emirates Stadium. He entered the game in the second half as a substitute and replaced the injured Szczsny.
Due to injuries sustained by backup goalkeeper David Ospina, Martinez played in his second Champions League game on November 26. He led his team to a victory over Borussia Dortmund by a score of 2-0 and kept a clean sheet in the process.

As a result of his “faultless” performance in the game, he was selected for this week’s UEFA Team of the Week.
On November 29, he made his first start in the Premier League against West Bromwich Albion, and then four days later, he started against Southampton. In those two matches, Arsenal won both of them 1-0, and he had two clean sheets in those games.

Martinez joined Championship club Rotherham United on an emergency loan on March 20, 2015, and will remain there until the end of the current campaign.

He made his debut the following day against South Yorkshire rivals Sheffield Wednesday. The game ended with a score of 3–2 against them at home. He was responsible for two goals in added time.

Petr ech, a newly signed player for Arsenal, started the 2015 FA Community Shield match on August 2 against Chelsea, while Martinez sat on the bench as an unused substitute. Arsenal defeated Chelsea by a score of 1-0.


On August 11, he made the move up to the Championship to play for Wolverhampton Wanderers on loan for the entire season.


After making 15 appearances in the first few months of the season, he suffered a thigh injury that forced him out of competition for several months. Despite his efforts, he was unable to regain his starting place after recovering from the injury.
He spent the 2016–17 season playing for his parent club, for whom he appeared in five games throughout the campaign. One of those games was in the Premier League, and it was against West Ham that he made his debut.


On August 2, 2017, he was given a loan to play for Getafe in La Liga for a period of one year[27], and on January 23, 2019, he was given a loan to play for Reading in the Championship until the end of the current season.
Martinez made his professional debut for Reading on January 29 against Bolton Wanderers. A few days later, on February 3, he won the Man of the Match award for Reading’s match against Aston Villa.

2019–20: Breakthrough and departure 

Martinez made his first appearance in the Premier League since the 2016–17 season when he came off the bench for Arsenal’s match against Brighton & Hove Albion on June 20, 2020. The Gunners were playing in a loss to the Seagulls, and Bernd Leno had to be taken off with an injury during the first half of the match.  Because of this, Martinez finished the season as the club’s starting goalkeeper and received high praise for his string of outstanding performances   Former Arsenal striker Ian Wright praised him, calling him “commanding” and saying that he played “brilliantly” while he was a member of the team for a significant portion of its history.  Martnez was selected to start in the FA Cup Final against Chelsea on August 1st. He went on to make some crucial saves to help Arsenal win their 14th FA Cup; after lifting the trophy, he was visibly emotional and was reduced to tears. Martnez’s performance helped Arsenal win their 14th FA Cup.

On the 29th of August, Arsenal played Liverpool in the Community Shield, which they ultimately won on penalties. Martnez started the game.


After the game, there was much speculation that Martinez would leave the club because Bernd Leno was returning. The player himself stated that he either wanted to stay at the club and be the first-choice goalkeeper or he wanted to leave the club permanently.


Martinez was not selected for the match against Fulham on the first day of the new Premier League season because there was rumored interest from a number of clubs in the Premier League as well as clubs from other countries, including Aston Villa and Brighton & Hove Albion.


Aston Villa 

2020–21 season 

Martinez made the move to Aston Villa, another club in the Premier League, on September 16, 2020, in a deal that was reportedly worth up to £20 million. He committed to a deal for the next four years. In his first game for Aston Villa, which took place on September 21, Martnez stopped a penalty kick from being taken by John Lundstram during the team’s 1–0 victory at home over Sheffield United. Martinez tied Brad Friedel’s club record for most clean sheets in a Premier League season with 15, which he achieved in his first season with Aston Villa. He was also chosen as the Aston Villa Supporters’ Player of the Season for his efforts during that season.

2021–22 season 

On 21 January 2022, Martinez signed a 3 year contract extension which will see him contracted to Villa until the end of the 2026–27 season. 

2022–23 season 

On 27 July 2022, ahead of the new season, Martinez was named one of the two Aston Villa vice-captains, alongside Diego Carlos.  

International career 


In June of 2011, Martnez was called up to the Argentina senior squad to replace Oscar Ustari for their match against Nigeria. On October 9 and 13, 2019, he was given his second call up to the senior squad to face Germany and Ecuador, respectively. He was an unused substitute for both of the friendly matches.

Martinez made his debut for his country on June 3, 2021, in a 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification match against Chile. The match ended in a 1–1 draw.

After that, on June 14, he made his debut in a major tournament, which was once again a 1–1 draw against the same opponent in the opening match of the 2021 Copa América, which took place at the Estádio Olmpico Nilton Santos in Brazil. The match was played against his current team.


In the 57th minute, he was successful in preventing Arturo Vidal’s penalty kick from going into the net, but he was unable to stop Eduardo Vargas from scoring on the rebound.

During the semi-final match between Argentina and Colombia, which took place on July 6, Martnez made three saves from the penalty spot, helping Argentina to a 3–2 victory over Colombia. After that, he went on to finish the tournament by keeping a clean sheet in the victory over Brazil in the championship game, which they won 1-0. As a result of his outstanding play throughout the 2021 Copa America, Martnez was recognized as the competition’s best goalkeeper and given the Golden Glove award.


Personal life 

He was given the nickname “Dibu” (an abbreviation of “Dibujo,” which is Spanish for “Drawing”) when he was a young player at Club Atlético Independiente during a time when the television series was very popular. Dibu is an acronym for “Drawing,” which was the name of an animated character in the Argentine television series “Mi familia es un dibujo.” In 2018, Martinez became a sponsored athlete for Puma after signing a deal with the company.

Martínez has been married to Portuguese businesswoman Amanda “Mandinha” (née Gama) since 2017. The couple’s children are a daughter named Ava and a son named Santi.