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Soccer News of Friday, 10 March 2023


I lie awake at night thinking about it — Emi Martinez opens up on outstanding World Cup final save

Emi Martinez denied Kolo Muani in the dying embers of the World Cup final Emi Martinez denied Kolo Muani in the dying embers of the World Cup final

Argentina's World Cup hero Emiliano Martinez has opened up on his outstanding save against France in the World Cup final at the Lusail Iconic Stadium in Qatar.

The Aston Villa shot-stopper pulled off a world-class save to deny Randal Kolo Muani in the 123rd minute in what was a breath-taking World Cup final which ended in a thrilling 3-3 stalemate after extra time.

Martinez continued his heroics in the shootouts after saving Kingsley Coman's spot kick and forcing Tchouaméni to fire his spot kick wide to ensure that Lionel Messi and Co cruised to 4-2 win from 12 yards.

The former Arsenal man won the golden glove award after the final for his remarkable performance in Qatar.

Recounting the moment in an interview with GOAL, Dibu explained that the world-class save which salvaged the Albiceleste from what could have been a great heartbreak is an experience he cannot get over.

"When I go to bed, when I close my eyes, I'm thinking 'what if that goes in?'," Martinez told GOAL.

"I couldn't enjoy it at the time. It was so quick. (Hugo) Lloris cleared it, we headed it back, (Ibrahima) Konate cleared it again and all of sudden (Randal) Kolo Muani is one-v-one against me. Normally I would rush out to the ball but I was cool, I waited for him

"I put a little bit of pressure. You see my left arm and my left leg goes to the near-post because I was praying, thinking that the ball would go there. I didn't move my face, I closed my eyes and I thought 'please hit me' and it did. I never turned my face. If it hit me here (points to his nose), better, you know, make sure it doesn't go in. It will be probably the best save of my football career."

Check out the video in the tweet below: