The Height Gap Between Lisandro Martinez and William Saliba Caught Everyone’s Attention: Martinez vs Saliba as Man United and Arsenal Took the Field
Football fans’ fixation with Lisandro Martinez’s height is already known. Although it may seem a bit exaggerated and unnecessary to bring up the Argentinian’s height whenever his performance is discussed, a recent photo of William Saliba’s and Lisandro Martinez’s difference in height is a little hard to ignore.
Lisandro Martinez and William Saliba have staggering differences in height
As Manchester United faced Arsenal last weekend at the Emirates, a photo was captured and circulated on X, where we can see players coming from the tunnel to the pitch, and the notable thing in the picture was the staggering difference in height between the former Ajax player and the Frenchman.
If we look at their height, the Arsenal defender stands at 6’4-inch whereas Lisandro Martinez is 5’9 inch tall. On one hand, Saliba’s height is quintessential to how a dream Centre Back height would look, and on the other hand, Martinez is “too short for the Premier League”.
Arsenal fans were quick to share a laugh as they commented that the deception in height is due to a wrong angle, poking fun at Ten Haag’s post-match conference, where the Dutchman criticized VAR’s decision to call Garnacho’s goal offside, as the red devil manager thought they looked it from the wrong angle.
United fans also bought the inevitable trump card, “The World Cup”, as Martinez although short had a World Cup to his name making him way bigger than Saliba.
Lisandro Martinez and William Saliba: Head-to-head
Keeping the banter aside, both the players have been quite a revelation for their respective clubs. Saliba was hands down the better performer last season, as he was the centerpiece of Arsenal’s defense that very nearly won the Premier League title.
Very nearly as they finally crumbled under pressure, while serial winners Manchester City moved ahead in the title race, ultimately lifting the trophy. One probable reason why Arsenal could not handle the pressure was the injury that kept William Saliba out during the final stages of the season, which further emphasizes his importance in the Arsenal team.
On the other hand, Lisandro Martinez proved all the doubters wrong who called him too short for Premier League football, earning praise from pundits, including Jamie Carragher, and was one of Ten Haag’s trusted men. Unlike Arsenal’s harmonic defensive line, Martinez performed well in a fragile United defense, with Varane frequently injured, and Maguire and De Gea low on confidence.
However, we would look at some stats to see how they compared to each other. According to Premier League’s official website, William Saliba has kept 12 clean sheets and scored 2 goals and provided 2 assists in 31 Premier League appearances. On the other hand, Lisandro Martinez kept 8 clean sheets, scoring once in 31 Premier League appearances.
When it comes to tackle success, the Frenchman had a better percentage of 57% compared to the Argentinians 55%. Martinez won 121 duels same as Saliba, however, the Arsenal defender recovered the ball 229 times, 51 times more than the World Cup Winner.
When it comes to clearances, Martinez cleared the ball 107 times, 13 times more than Saliba. Interception wise, Martinez was better again as he made 34 interceptions compared to Saliba’s 25.
When it comes to Aerial battle, which is where the height factor plays in, Saliba was the clear winner and the clear loser as he won more Aerial duals than Martinez and lost more aerial duals than Martinez. Saliba won 61 Aerial battles and lost 47 times, whereas the Manchester United defender won 33 times and lost 36 times. Martinez, however, lost more aerial duals than he won, unlike Saliba who won more than he lost. So, height does play a part when it comes to aerial battles.
Lastly, Saliba had a better disciplinary record as he committed 21 fouls and received 4 yellow cards, compared to Martinez’s 23 fouls and 8 yellow cards.