Emiliano Martinez went through a rollercoaster of emotions against Manchester United on Saturday night.
Despite standing out as one of the Premier League‘s best goalkeepers of the last 18 months, the Aston Villa man didn’t cover himself in glory with Bruno Fernandes’ opening goal.
The United midfielder unleashed a relatively tame shot from the edge of the penalty area in the opening few minutes at Villa Park which somehow found its way through Martinez’s grasp.
Martinez’s error vs Man Utd
A combination of the ball’s movement and bounce appeared to throw off the Villa shot-stopper as he couldn’t organise his hands in time to stop the strike from squirming between his legs.
Naturally, the error led to plenty of mockery from United fans who made the link between Martinez’s clanger and the mind games that he played on Fernandes in the reverse fixture at Old Trafford.
It was easy to see the whole ‘revenge’ storyline from Fernandes’ perspective when Martinez had almost certainly played a role in the United man shovelling a crucial penalty over the bar.
Aston Villa fight back
However, it turns out that the so-called retribution didn’t last very long because Martinez ended up having the last laugh despite Fernandes lashing another goal past him in the second-half.
There was nothing that Martinez could have done about the second goal, but it didn’t matter anyway as Villa launched an impressive comeback to heap more misery on the Ralf Rangnick era.
Jacob Ramsey got the turnaround underway by latching on to Fred’s wayward tackle and finishing past David de Gea, before Philippe Coutinho marked his second Premier League debut in style.
Martinez’s brilliant reaction
By the time that the Barcelona loanee had completed the comeback at the back post, there were wild scenes of jubilation around Villa Park that Martinez simply couldn’t help getting involved with.
In fact, replays showed that the Copa America-winning goalkeeper immediately leaped over the advertising boards to immerse himself in the crowd for a special moment with the Villa fans.
Turn away now, Bruno, because it does go to show that Martinez had the last laugh in the end and you can check out his unbridled joy at Villa’s comeback in the footage down below:
Just look at what it means. Absolute limbs.
Martinez has the last laugh
It’s moments like that where the importance of fans in the stadium really becomes apparent because it’s always special to see the players celebrating dramatic goals with those who cheer them on.
And Martinez is most certainly loved by the Villa Park faithful because not only has he brought fantastic performances to Birmingham, but also the type of personality and drive that fans love.
Aston Villa 2-2 Man Utd Match Reaction (Football Terrace)
So, just in the way that Villa supporters will have loved Martinez’s mind games against Fernandes at Old Trafford, you can bet that they will have loved the sight of him jumping into the crowd.
Fernandes will just have to wait a little longer for any potential revenge.