After helping Argentina defeat Uruguay, Lionel Messi praised ex-Arsenal goalkeeper Emi Martinez as “one of the best in the world.”

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After helping Argentina defeat Uruguay, Lionel Messi praised ex-Arsenal goalkeeper Emi Martinez as “one of the best in the world.”

LIONEL MESSI considers Emi Martinez, a former Arsenal goalkeeper, to be “one of the best goalkeepers in the world.”

After helping Argentina beat Uruguay 3-0 in a World Cup qualifier in Buenos Aires on Monday, he made the daring declaration.

Martinez, 29, earned his Argentina debut in June and has since maintained six clean sheets in 11 games.

Messi claims he secured himself as Argentina’s new No 1 after playing all but one of his country’s matches when they won the Copa America this year.

“Dibu [Emiliano] Martinez is vital,” the Paris Saint-Germain mastermind told TNT Sports.

“He always replies when people come to him.”

“The truth is that after the Copa America, he established himself.”

“Without a doubt, we have one of the top goalkeepers in the world.” We make the most of it.” JOIN SUN VEGAS AND RECEIVE A FREE £10 BONUS PLUS ACCESS TO THOUSANDS OF GAMES WITH NO DEPOSIT REQUIRED (Ts&Cs apply) At River Plate’s Monumental stadium, Messi opened the scoring – with a strange goal – before Rodrigo de Paul and Lauturo Martinez made it 3-0 by the 62nd minute.

They are second in South American World Cup qualifying, six points behind Brazil and six ahead of third-placed Ecuador.

Martinez joined Villa for £20 million from Arsenal last September.

After Mikel Arteta made it apparent that Bernd Leno would be the Gunners’ No 1 ahead of him, he signed a long-term contract for roughly £60,000 a week.

Martinez, despite claims that the move was a step backward, vehemently disagrees.

“They all claimed it was a step back in my career, but I always said it was a step up,” he explained.

⚽ For the most up-to-date rumours, rumors, and completed transactions, visit our Football news live blog. “I chose Villa because I believed in the manager and the club’s objectives, and I was aware of the club’s size.

“Some people are unaware of Aston Villa’s size. My objective, like I stated on day one, is to be in Europe with Aston Villa.

“I want to elevate this club to new heights, and I believe we are on the right track. Is it possible to complete it this season? Yes. But we’ll have to put in the effort.” BETS WITHOUT RISK: NEW CUSTOMER DEALS WORTH OVER £2,000

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