Argentina goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez has been grabbing the headlines ever since his side defeated France in a tense FIFA World Cup final on December 18. It didn’t end there as the Argentina goalkeeper was seen holding a baby toy with Kylian Mbappe‘s face on it during the World Cup-winning side’s victory parade back home. Due to both gestures, the star goalkeeper has been facing harsh criticism for his actions.
According to a recent report, the president of the French Football Federation Noel Le Graet has lodged a formal complaint with Argentina Football Association (AFA) over the goalkeeper making fun of Mbappe during the victory parade of the Argentina national football team.
“I wrote to my counterpart from the Argentine Federation, I find these excesses abnormal, in the context of a sports competition, and I find it difficult to understand,” said Le Graet as quoted by Ouest-France. “This is going too far. Mbappe’s behavior has been exemplary.”
Meanwhile, French sports minister Amelie Oudea-Castera was scathing about Martinez’s conduct on Friday.
“I find it pitiful,” she said as quoted by AFP. “It’s just vulgar, inappropriate, really not up to the occasion. Emiliano Martinez is not distinguishing himself. It is rather pathetic.”
On the other hand, Aston Villa manager Unai Emery has said that he will speak to Martinez about the Argentina goalkeeper’s controversial World Cup celebrations when he returns to club duty with the Premier League side. Martinez made a key save to deny Randal Kolo Muani in extra-time and then denied Kingsley Coman in a penalty shoot-out in Qatar as Argentina beat France in a thrilling final.