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Lee Sharpe backs Manchester United to make move for Emiliano Martinez after World Cup antics | Football

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Martinez showed the good and the bad at the World Cup (Picture: Getty)

Former Manchester United star Lee Sharpe has urged the club to consider Emiliano Martinez as a long-term replacement for David de Gea.

Martinez was a penalty shoot-out hero for Argentina against France as La Albiceleste won their first World Cup since 1986 in Qatar but the goalkeeper’s antics in the aftermath left football fans divided.

The Aston Villa shot stopper made a lewd gesture with his Golden Gloves Trophy, later revealing it was aimed at French fans and taunted Kylian Mbappe by calling for a minute’s silence for the PSG star during dressing room celebrations.

Martinez was then seen carrying around a doll with Mbappe’s face attached to it during celebrations back in Buenos Aires. Despite the controversial moments, Martinez proved his worth in goal with stand-out performances in Qatar.

Meanwhile, the future of United goalkeeper de Gea remains uncertain with the club opting not to exercise an option to extend his contract at Old Trafford beyond this summer.

United want the 32-year-old to instead sign a new contract on a lower salary but should the club seek a new option in goal, Sharpe believes Martinez could be the right fit.

While believing the former Arsenal man overreacted with some of his antics in Qatar, the former United winger believes his exploits in goal show he could handle the pressure of being no1 at Old Trafford.

De Gea’s current deal expires at the end of the season (Picture: Getty)

‘You’ve got to remember that all goalkeepers are a bit different to most people – playing a different position, with different pressures, and he’s played in one of the biggest games in the world and maybe overreacted a little bit but I wouldn’t take away from what he’s done and what he’s achieved,’ Sharpe told NewCasinoUK.

‘I think he’s saved more penalties at a World Cup than anybody, had a really good World Cup and I think he’s a really good keeper and I think he would be good for United.

‘I know there are question marks over De Gea so maybe he would be decent to come in and we certainly know that he can cope under pressure.’

Sharpe believes United’s decision not to extend De Gea’s deal is a clear sign Erik ten Hag wants a new long-term goalkeeper.

‘That’s what I took from that, and United are probably having a look elsewhere,’ he continued.

‘The manager may want someone a little better with their feet – I know De Gea isn’t bad with his feet, but he certainly he’s not a top class football. He’s still one of the best keepers in the world with his shot-stopping and reflexes, but does make the odd mistake now and again, but who doesn’t.

‘I think he’ll be hard to replace, as it’s a difficult position to come in and a difficult club to come to – there are massive pressures and every mistake is scrutinised and takes a different mentality. De Gea has that mentality to cope with that, so I do think he’s be difficult to replace.’


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