Comparing Emi Martinez’s Penalty Shootout Heroics With Argentina and Aston Villa vs France and Lille

Comparing Emi Martinez’s Penalty Shootout Heroics With Argentina and Aston Villa vs France and Lille

Joel Reyes
April 19, 2024 at 1:32 AM
In this article:
Emiliano Martínez logo
E. Martínez
Aston Villa logoGArgentina logo
Lionel Messi logo
Inter Miami CF logoFArgentina logo
Paulo Dybala logo
P. Dybala
AS Roma logoFArgentina logo
Aston Villa logo
Aston Villa
France logo
Lille logo
Argentina logo
FIFA World Cup logo
FIFA World Cup
UEFA Europa Conference League logo
  • Aston Villa advanced to the UECL semi-finals after beating Lille on Thursday night
  • Argentina won their third World Cup title with a win over France in the 2022 final
  • Emi Martinez starred in both of those wins, making key stops in the penalty shootout

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There's something about the French that gets Emi Martinez going.

The Argentinian goalkeeper led Aston Villa to victory on French soil, beating Lille in a penalty shootout in the UEFA Europa Conference League quarter-finals.

Sports Brief compares Martinez's heroics in the win against Lille to his magical night with Argentina in the 2022 World Cup Final against France.

Emi Martinez, Argentina, France, Lille, Aston Villa, World Cup, FIFA World Cup, UEFA Europa Conference League
Emi Martinez reacts during the Aston Villa vs. Lille match; Lionel Messi and Martinez hold their individual awards in the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Images: Matthieu Mirville/ Jean Catuffe.
Source: Getty Images

Martinez leads Argentina to World Cup title

Lionel Messi received all the plaudits when Argentina won their third World Cup title in Qatar, but their victory in the 2022 final against France wouldn't have been possible without the brilliance of Martinez between the sticks.

He made sure that the match would go into a penalty shootout, saving Kolo Muani's attempt in the last minute of extra time with his outstretched leg.

With that incredible stop, he kept the game tied at 3-3, setting the stage for more late drama.

Martinez delivered a masterclass in the penalty shootout, according to Professor Geir Jordet in an interview with CNN.

He said that the Argentine keeper set the tone right from the start by arriving first in the penalty area to mark his territory.

He then applied pressure on France's first two penalty-takers, disrupting their routines by asking the referee to check the placement of the ball on the spot.

The mind games worked as he saved France's second penalty. He guessed correctly where Kingsley Coman was going with his shot, with Martinez diving low to his right to make the key stop.

After the save, he then gave crucial penalty advice to Paulo Dybala, telling him to shoot down the middle as opposing goalkeepers always dive to their left or right, per

He was proven right, with Dybala giving Argentina a 2-1 lead in the shootout after his penalty conversion.

Aurélien Tchouaméni also fell victim to Martinez's antics. He was prevented from taking his spot-kick quickly, with Martinez holding the ball for some time.

The Argentinian then rolled the ball away at a 45-degree angle when the referee demanded its return, forcing Tchouameni to get it himself.

That long delay had an effect, with the Frenchman missing his penalty. Those two stops proved to be enough for Argentina, who won 4-2 in the shootout after making all of their spot kicks.

Martinez leads Aston Villa to UECL win

Aston Villa headed into France carrying a slim 2-1 advantage over Lille in their UEFA Europa Conference League tie.

That lead soon vanished in the second leg, with Yusuf Yasici and Benjamin Andre scoring goals for Lille in the 15th and 67th minute to hand the home side a 3-2 aggregate advantage.

Matty Cash came to Villa's rescue, scoring a goal in the 87th minute to send the match into extra time. The game eventually went into a penalty shootout, where Martinez once again showed his excellence.

He saved Lille's first penalty to hand Villa an early advantage. Controversy erupted after stopping Nabil Bentaleb's penalty, though, as he received a second yellow card for gamesmanship.

Fortunately for Martinez and Villa, he was able to remain in the contest as IFAB rule 10.3 stipulates that bookings are not carried through to the penalty shootout, per Sky Sports.

He sealed the visitors' win with a save on Benjamin Andre's attempt, leading Villa to their first major European semi-final since 1982.

Lille chief slams Martinez after shootout loss

Sports Brief recently reported on the Lille chief slamming Martinez's attitude in the penalty shootout.

Olivier Letang voiced his dismay after the French side lost 4-3 on penalties to Villa.

He said that Martinez's attitude in the shootout was not befitting a player of his calibre.

Joel Reyes photo
Joel Reyes
Joel Reyes is a sports editor at with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of the Philippines. He has eight years of work experience in sports writing.