‘How can I make fun of Mbappe? He scored four past me!’: Emi Martinez DENIES mocking France’s beaten World Cup final star – despite holding up a doll with his face on and taunting him with dressing room chants – after Argentina’s triumph in Qatar
- Emi Martinez saved a Kingsley Coman penalty to help Argentina win World Cup
- Mbappe scored a hat-trick and a penalty in the shootout but was on losing side
- Martinez called for a minute’s silence for Mbappe and held a doll with his face on
Emiliano Martinez has denied mocking France’s beaten World Cup final star Kylian Mbappe after Argentina’s triumph in Qatar.
The PSG star scored a hat-trick and converted his penalty in the shootout, but it was not enough to see his side win successive World Cups.
Martinez was ultimately one of the biggest heroes for Argentina, saving Kingsley Coman’s penalty to help secure his country’s third World Cup title.
Despite the historic win, Martinez received widespread backlash for his wild celebrations – in which he called for a minute’s silence for Mbappe in the dressing room and later held aloft a baby doll with the striker’s face on it.
It came despite Martinez being one of the first people to console Mbappe following France’s gut-wrenching defeat.
Emi Martinez has denied mocking Kylian Mbappe during Argentina’s World Cup celebrations despite holding a baby doll with the French striker’s face on it
Martinez joked that he could not mock someone who put the ball past him four times – a hat-trick and a penalty in the shootout
After returning to PSG, Mbappe dismissed Martinez’s actions by claiming that he was not bothered by them.
And now Martinez, in an interview with France Football, has finally addressed his bizarre mockery of Mbappe.
‘I held it [baby doll] for like two minutes and I threw it away, that’s all’, said Martinez.
‘How can I make fun of Mbappe? He scored four past me. Four goals in a final! He must think I am his toy baby! I have huge respect for Mbappe.’
The Aston Villa goalkeeper also revealed what he said to Mbappe while consoling him.
‘I told him he should be proud of himself and keep his head high, because he played a fantastic game and that he was one of the best players in the world,’ he added.
‘He was flying, we could not stop him.’
Martinez received widespread backlash for his celebrations during Argentina’s triumph
Martinez – who started dancing when Real Madrid star Aurelien Tchouameni put his penalty wide in the shootout – also made a lewd gesture when he was awarded Golden Glove trophy for keeping the most clean sheets in Qatar.
He was pictured making the gesture with the prestigious trophy as he held it over his private parts.
Martinez has since explained that he did it because French fans were booing him during Argentina’s thrilling final win.
He was slammed for his celebrations by the likes of former France international Patrick Vieira – who claimed it ‘took away a little bit from what Argentina achieved’.
Meanwhile, reports after the World Cup claimed that his Aston Villa manager Unai Emery was keen to sell him after being unimpressed with the keeper.