By Jonty Banks

20th May, 2023 | 7:10pm

Emi Martinez tipped to remain at Aston Villa by BBC pundit as transfer news drops

We’re delighted to welcome former Aston Villa full-back Alan Hutton as our exclusive columnist. Each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at Villa Park

Alan Hutton hopes Emi Martinez will stay at Aston Villa this summer and play a role in Unai Emery’s assault on the Premier League top six next season.

The Mirror recently reported (12 May) that Chelsea are set to battle Manchester United for the signature of the Argentine international in the upcoming transfer window.

Martinez is said to be considering his future at Villa Park despite the remarkable revival under Unai Emery this season.

The Villa goalkeeper emerged as the penalty shoot-out hero in December as Argentina lifted their first World Cup since 1986.

As well as saving two penalties against France, the 30-year-old scooped up the Golden Glove and was subsequently named the Best FIFA Men’s Goalkeeper of 2022.

Speaking exclusively to Villa News, Hutton said: “I think winning the World Cup has blasted his confidence through the roof, and everybody is suddenly sitting up and taking notice.

“He’s worked incredibly hard to get there, so whatever he decides moving forward will be his choice.

“Moving forward, I did read that they are trying to get a new goalkeeper if Pochettino comes in. They need to shift somebody, they’re not going to get their money back for either Arrizabalaga and Mendy, I wouldn’t have thought, so it’s going to be difficult to shift one of those.

“Hopefully, Martinez does stay at Villa because I do believe that after the summer and even into the next transfer window, Emery will have a real good squad there that is going to challenge for top-six and, in the future, hopefully even higher.”

Aston Villa are expected to enter the summer transfer window with a war chest in the region of £200million, with the club already plotting an ambitious double move for Ferran Torres and Dusan Vlahovic. [The Telegraph, 4 May]

Pochettino is set to make a goalkeeper signing his number one priority this summer, so it is still unclear whether the Villa star will be donning the claret and blue colours next season.

In other Aston Villa news, one Villa sensation has passed the first-team test with a senior role now firmly on the cards.