Emery offers glowing assessment of key Villa duo

Aston Villa boss Unai Emery has praised Argentine duo Emi Martinez and Emi Buendia as he hopes the pair will be integral to our progression under him.

Villa return to competitive action against Liverpool on Boxing Day, and although he confirmed that Martinez will be absent as he has been given additional time off after his World Cup heroics, Buendia will no doubt play a pivotal role in trying to help us secure all three points.

READ MORE: Aston Villa team news: Martinez, Olsen and Ramsey updates vs Liverpool

Both players have been handed a big role under Emery thus far, and given the quality that they add in their respective phases of the game, it’s hoped that they continue to improve and establish themselves as fundamental figures in our bid to compete at the top level.

Based on his comments below on Martinez, Emery sees the Villa shot-stopper as being a vital presence on and off the pitch given his mentality and experience as well as his achievements with Argentina. He can undoubtedly be a leader within the group and help those around him reach a higher level individually and collectively, and it’s a role that Emery will hope he embraces on his return next week.

As for Buendia, while he will admit himself that he needs to pick his numbers up in terms of goal contributions, he is looking much more comfortable and effective under Emery thus far, and he’ll hope to start making a decisive impact in games to really kick on and cement his place in the Villa XI for the long-term future.

It’s clear thus far that Emery trusts him, likes the attributes and strengths that he adds to the team and wants to make him a key part of his plans, but that must be rewarded with consistently high performance levels now.

The Villa duo will be pivotal moving forward, and it will be down to Emery and his coaching staff as well to ensure that they continue to develop their respective games and continue to be increasingly influential in our push for success in the coming years.

Emery on Emi Martinez

“He is progressing a lot and is so ambitious,” he told the media, as per BirminghamLive. “When I knew him at Arsenal he was telling me in that moment I want to be the first goalkeeper of Argentina. He achieved it. The last time I met with him here I was talking about his ambition and he told me he wanted to be the best goalkeeper in the world. I want players like that. I want players being ambitious, professional every day and thinking to learn and be better. His mind is so strong.

“Here we don’t have a lot of players with experiences winning a lot of trophies and titles – those big moments. I think Emiliano can – and must – use these experiences to help us here and be positive.

“Hopefully we will eventually win some trophies here and get closer to our target to be in Europe with Aston Villa. When you have players with those experiences winning a lot they can help you better on the pitch and in the dressing room.

“I like players to open up and share their experiences with one another. Now we can use Emiliano to do that here.”

Emery on Emi Buendia

“Emi is a very good player and he has a big challenge here with Aston Villa. His career here is just starting,” he added. according to Villa TV. “Fans of Aston Villa must enjoy him. His position is similar to (Lionel) Messi but they are so different – both Argentinian but very different. We want to enjoy working with him to achieve his best performance.

“He’s doing very good work every day to do his best in the future and in the present with us.”