Aston Villa have reportedly submitted a bid “substantially closer” to Arsenal’s £20M asking price for goalkeeper Emi Martinez. It’s the Villans second bid for the Argentine keeper, who are keen to secure a replacement for the injured Tom Heaton before the Premier League opens this weekend.

Martinez is under contract with Arsenal through 2022 but could be on the move this window. The Gunners have reportedly offered him a new contract, but it looks as if he rejected the club’s initial offer. Martinez wants a starting position and #1 keeper role after his impressive performances in place of the injured Bernd Leno during the restart. I don’t blame him. He has shown he’s more than good enough, and he has ambitions of starting for Argentina at Copa America this coming summer.

While Aston Villa are prepared to offer Martinez the spot he wants, Mikel Arteta may not be there yet. He has a difficult decision to make between Martinez and Leno to start this season. Both are superb keepers. Martinez played great in a small sample. Bernd Leno has been Arsenal’s most important player not named Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.