When German goalkeeper Bernd Leno first arrived at Arsenal from Bayer Leverkusen in the summer, there were question marks over whether he was good enough to be the Gunners long-term number one. The person that seemed to question his ability most was Arsenal boss Unai Emery, who seemed reluctant to start him ahead of veteran Petr Cech.
However, the summer signing now seems to have won over his boss and the majority of Arsenal fans too. Leno has started the last 21 Premier League games after replacing Cech at Watford as a substitute. He has not looked back since.
Now producing vital saves
Leno is now producing vital saves that are earning the Gunners points. The German produced two saves against Tottenham in the north London derby on Saturday to help his team achieve a draw.
Leno was known as a good stopper at Leverkusen, while also being good with the ball at his feet. His shot-stopping ability as certainly been on display in the top-flight this season, as he has made 73 saves in the Premier League.
The defence has not helped him settling in
Leno obviously needed time and games to settle at Arsenal and always maintained he was willing to wait for his chance when Cech was in possession of the number jersey. He remained patient and is starting to look more at home as Arsenal’s number one.
One factor that has not helped Leno settle in the team is the fact that the Gunners defence has looked highly vulnerable for much of the campaign. Emery has had to change his backline on a number of occasions due to injuries, so it has never quite been settled.
An improved defensive display at Tottenham is good news for everybody connected with the club, including the team’s goalkeeper, who has been a busy man in recent weeks.
Not a bad debut campaign for Leno
The Gunners are still very much in the race for a top-four spot and are odds of 15/8 to clinch a Champions League spot. For the Gunners to achieve that goal then everybody in the Gunners squad needs to be on top form, including Leno.
The German goalkeeper is enjoying a decent debut campaign in between the sticks after a mixed start to life in north London. However, he is still young for a goalkeeper and hopefully, he goes on and improves even further in an Arsenal shirt.
Can Bernd Leno be the long-term Arsenal number one?