Emiliano Martinez set to start for Argentina in World Cup qualifier


Emiliano Martinez is set to receive his first ever cap for Argentina on Thursday in a World Cup qualifier.

Despite the initial rumors being that Franco Armani would be the starting goalkeeper for Argentina vs. Chile on Thursday, reports out of Argentina are now stating that the Aston Villa goalkeeper has impressed the Argentina coaching staff more than his counter part.

Martinez, who kept a club record 13 clean sheets in his first season with Aston Villa, has previously been selected for Argentina but never played. In addition, coach Scaloni would have reportedly decided on a few other changes in the starting eleven.

Per a report by TN Deportes, here is the starting eleven for Argentina:

Emiliano Martinez; Foyth, Martinez Quarta, Pezzella, Lisandro Martinez; De Paul, Paredes, Acuña; Ocampos, Lautaro Martinez, Messi.


  1. L martinez 23
    M quarta 25
    C Romero 23
    J foyth 23.

    Let’s get them integrated these are the ones we have let us start supporting them.
    Expect some mistakes be patient
    These guys are the next generation

  2. Some of you guys on here have been spot on from the start.
    Especially with the local press
    First question was about armani did not do anything wrong to get dropped..
    Scaloni handled it like a baoss

  3. Crazy for Scaloni to not start Series A best defender. Incredible form should never be overlooked.

    I really like LMQ but Romero over Pezz any day. Never was a fan of his NT performance and he’s doing poorly in league as well.

  4. Lisandro and Foyth as fullbacks? Not a good idea in my opinion as neither would provide width. Messi may have to drop deep to get the ball. Acuña and Ocampos would just hug the touchline but that can be easily counteracted with a compact 4-4-2 or 4-5-1 or 5-3-2. Modern game needs proper overlapping fullbacks. Of course Paredes and De Paul can unlock the defence too but without proper width it will be harder. Playing with 4 central defenders rarely works out well in a modern game.

    • When did the last time Rodrigo de Paul opened the opposition’s defence in the the argentina shirt?
      If ocampos and Acuna is playing,there are enough legs to cover up Paredes, now de paul needs to step up and should start contributing in the final third.

      • This season for Udinese he was very prolific in terms of key passes, playing the same CM position he does for the NT. So at least in theory he can do that.

  5. Without lo celso and Gonzalez we will struggle. Those 2 were the best players in our last outing.
    U can’t replace lo celso/palacios with Acuna.
    And ocampos is a fighter and is full of energy but c’mon he is nowhere close to the level of Gonzalez.
    I just can’t see from where the goals will come.
    May be it’s time for de Paul to start creating some chances for Messi and lautaro.

  6. Whether anyone knew it or not, I knew it would happen.
    Believe it or not, I believed Scalney would make that decision. Thank you sir.

  7. Acuna in midfield I do not know when he performed good in midfield even when whole team performed good Acuna was below average in midfield vs Uruguay in Saudi Arabia.
    Either Emi Buendai or Papu Gomez should play in Left Midfield not Acuna. Acuna is only good in Left Back role he is a LB.
    Since Sampoli Acuna is being used in Midfield and not a single good performance he has given till now. Acuna had great season in Sevilla as Left Back this should be noticed.

    • Yes Buendia could play easily in left midfielder/winger role too, ha starts the games in right, but often switches postions in Norwich matches, or Buendia right, Ocampos left. Buendia gets the high work rate of Acuna or Ocampos, and much more creative.

    • Acuna is more of a winger to make runs behind defence. So is Ocampos. Their’s and De Paul’s high workrate will compensate for Messi’s and Parede’s low work rate.

      Also Lisandro and Foyth are not the type of fullbacks to bomb forward and overlap, hence Acuna and Ocampos will do it.

      • Mostly wingbacks create spaces for wingers, 2 natural wingers without support from the back are waste of time, with 4 centre backs behind they will run only into walls and into deep stacked defence, more negative than positive aspects.

        • If you take out Chilwell and James/Hudson Odoi from Chelsea with their countless overlapping runs, and put centre defenders there, Werner, Havertz, Pulisic or Mount have zero spaces.

      • Foyth makes run in final third watch his game vs Arsenal and Lisandro Martinez also likes to move forward his chip balls over the opponents are great.

          • Correct 4 centerbacks is way to conservative, if you play 3 cbs in 2 pure and 1 half like foyth, then as 4th defender you need atleast acuna in lb role as he is way to attacking and high work rate and in midfield along with depaul and paredes we need one more midfielder like buendia Or locelso who can create chances along with messi. In this team we have enough high work rate players like acuna ocampos depaul. So the team should be emi;foyth, quarta martinez, pezzala, acuna;depaul, paredes, locelso/buendai;ocampos, lautaro, messi

  8. With this starting 11 Chile will dominate the game and Scaloni want to play counter attacking football. Very pragmatic approach, how France won the WC, it will be ugly, but maybe succesfull. Acuna in midfield is a waste of space imo, his passing in tight spaces and against heavy pressure is bad, a shaky passer, just like Ocampos, but good crosser and long baller, definitely a left back, not a midfielder. Ocampos on the right, Acuna on the left and De Paul in middle, who is a creative distrubutor (in Udinese at least), but not a dominate passer (still has rather winger-tendencies), we will play very simple, basic football. Tipic Scaloni.

  9. Hello Roy Nemer! Emiliano Martinez has 15 cleansheets this last season not 13.
    I will agree that he will be the starting goalkeeper after seeing him in the goal during match otherwise the way Scaloni use to love Armani with poor goalkeeping ability I can’t believe that as earlier as this.

  10. First time I heard an interview from emi Martinez, he said his main goal was to be the starter at the national team he was not even playing,I thought he was over confident but the whole th iij neg happened to bert leno,the rest is history…..I hope he does well cause all of us on here rooting for him …as for armani he’s been declining at river I can’t feel too bad for him.9

  11. I for one will be convinced once the starting eleven is announced. Hope this is true, No one is more deserving that Emiliano Martinez for the Goal Keeping spot. Hope he puts on a good show if started and don’t make any errors, Due to debut pressure.

  12. #Scaloni is doubt about Romero/pezzela?
    And acuna / teglefico?
    #But i like to..
    D Emi Martinez
    Foyth Quarta(Otamendi) Romero Teglefico
    De Paul Paredes Bundeia(lo ceslo not fit 100% )
    Messi Lautro DMaria( N Gonzalez not fit 100%)

  13. Very happy for Emi Martinez! Well fought and well deserved! It was inevitable, just like Romero is.

    LMQ Pezzella leaked a lot of goals last season, but they have continuity of playing together. Both with poor form and LMQ back to Fiorentina bench in the end. If they start, I expect Romero to come on in the second half to make a statement.
    2 qualifiers and 4 group stage matches before knockout phase begins. There is time to integrate him.

  14. Hi Olive,

    In a pervious thread, you had mentioned Emi came from nowhere. It may seem like it but Emi did not come out of nowhere. I knew Emi when he was 17 years old and has just joined Arsenal academy. He was a big talent at tender age.We used talk about him at argentinaworldcup blog run by Maxi Lopez. He was known as Damian Martinez back then. Martinez never got proper chance at Arsenal, mostly playing at different clubs on loan. But when he got the chance, he capitalized it. But it could very well gone wrong and we would never hear about him. Actually, I myself had given up on him but glad it worked out.

    As for wingback, we don’t really have such youngsters playing in any big clubs academy, not that I know of. So it is AFA and local club’s responsibility to promote wingbacks. It is about culture and wingback culture can be created. Clubs bet on forwards because they can sell high. They need to realize today you can profit from wingbacks too. Inter milan is asking 80 million for hakimi and Hakimi comes from Morocco.

    • True what you are talking about Martinez. I too remember him by the name Damian Martinez only. I think he also managed to get into Gunners’ main roster by the time he’d turned 20.

      For wingbacks, Valentino Fattore Scotta of Sevilla is an exciting prospect. Also if you have noticed, the trend in Argentina has somewhat changed that we get to see more attack-minded fullbacks these days. I was expecting this change to be gradual but somehow it seems things have come in quick and sharp. Weignandt, Bernabei and Aguirre of Lanus, Martino(Talleres), Santiago Montiel(Gonzalo’s cousin) etc. have got their names added to the list that sees Bustos and Montiel leading the way for these younger lads.

      • Bernabei is really talented, they need to take care of him. I was really impressed with Jose Luis Gomez of Lanus. His diagonal and vertical runs were something else. He was only positive from 2016 Olympic. Unfortunately he has faded away.

        • Oh yes.. but let’s see what happens with Julian Aude now… I’m hopeful. Players like Valentin Barco and Lucas Vera could also make timely breakthrough.

    • Mafioso, maybe saying he came out of nowhere was a but exaggerated, but as a second choice goalkeeper I thought Romero or even Gazzaniga might have been better at the time, and when Leno got injured he really surprised me. When you consider the difference with a year ago and now it feels pretty shocking and unexpected, mostly considering how long he had been at Arsenal and that this rise did not occur in his first years when people knew him. About wingbacks my greatest issue is fullback because right this moment we are set with left back but not with rightback, yet all Montiel Foyth and Molina are set to become better. What happens in the future with left back? I know no young promising left back in Argentina. Our only bet is Cufre from Mallorca or Bernabei but that is a big drop off unless Bernabei develops very well. I expect the situation with left back and right back to switch in the next five years

  15. The selection of first GK should not be a dilematic decision and create a polemic or dispute. Emi is the best GK that Arg now have and reliable. Scaloni should be thinking and more focus on the defence and DM; this is the top priority : a right composition and work chemistry rather than the GK issue.

    Let’s talk more about the game plan and effective system

  16. Hope its true & waiting for official confirmation . If yes one mistake corrected . The pending one is then integrating Romero to starting squad . The article says Emi has impressed the Argentina coaching staff more than Armani . Was wondering how the coaching staff was more impressed with Armani over Emi till this camp 🤣

  17. I would like to see this squad
    Foyth romero lisandro acuna
    Baundia depaul paredes j.correa
    Messi lautaro

  18. Wow Emi Martinez is now starting goalkeeper. It is most important decision which Argentina staff has done. C. Romero also needs to be starter he is choosen as the best defender in Serie A this season.
    Lucas Quarta Martinez has composure in himself but he just need to mark the defenders well and good increase in his pace to be starter. For right now C. Romero and Otamendi are best pair for CB.

  19. Ocampos will be the right winger. It will be a 4-4-2. Just like second half of Brazil match. Lots of muscle but lack of creative passing that Lo Celso would bring but he is not fit 100%.

    • I don’t think that is starting 11 few surprises may on the way still cuti Romero may start over pezzella
      I’m liking what scaloni and his coaching Staff doing so far.


        • @AFA, I’m reading recent news that 5 sub rule will apply in the World Cup. Also, I looked back at our qualifiers post covid and the 5 sub rule applied there as well. So I think it’s safe to say that we will be allowed 5 subs in these qualifiers, which is really good as we have a strong bench and better opportunities to integrate some players

      • Hello Godin,

        I don’t think Romero will start. Romero has just joined the nt setup. He may get some minutes as sub in this match or next.

        Both Pezzella and LMQ will start due to seniority. Even though quality is lesser than Romero. It is what it is. But I have no doubt, Romero will get into starting XI eventually.

        • mafioso
          You probably right and I see the logic on it However the coaching staff have few good season with players already excluding today, I mean They didn’t have this length time last 4 qualifier matches to try new players and information that is why I think Cuti Romero has chance. Pezzella himself never played qualifier match before even though he has experience and played copa 19.

  20. I guess it’s more like a 4321, De Paul and Acuna as central midfielders on each side and Paredes regista, Ocampos will be free to play on both side.

    I think it’s an excellent tactical choice of Scaloni, as I mentioned previously this 4 CBs behind and Acuna as midfielder, Ocampos as winger can help fixing problems we have like slow CB and absence of natural defensive midfielders. The whole team can defend well and free Messi from defensive task. Ocampos and Lautaro both of them can use their energy to press the opponents. I have no doubt that will work. Maybe I will only replace Quarta or Pezzella by Romero and Ocampos by Buendia. But I think this 11 is already very good.

  21. I am happy that Scaloni selected Martinez but i dont understand the squad selection. If he plays with this selection who will play on the right side. If he want to play messi on right side it will be wrong idea. Foyth also can not over lap. Then who will play on right attacking mid or wing. More over i expected Romero in CB. Romero >>> Pezzella any day.

    • It is 4-4-2.

      Acuna as left winger. Ocampos as right winger.
      Paredes, De Paul as center midfielders.
      Messi as #10 and Martinez as #9

      Yes, Foyth cannot overlap, hence Ocampos will be the only one providing width. Messi will occupy half space and link with Ocampos.
      On other side, DePaul will occupy half space and link with Acuna.

      Both Acuna, Ocampas will be making runs in behind the defense.

      And yes, Romero >>> Pezella.

      I think eventually, Romero will bench Pezella. Scaloni has made the right decisions while picking up 30 players. I am sure he will select Romero soon.

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