There’s not much more than needs to be said when it comes to Arsenal’s actual start to the season, because it’s there for everyone to see. They were outplayed by better sides in the first two games and narrowly edged past three that they should be beating easily. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? Regardless, it’s interesting to note the direction they’re trending in as a club – even though we want to focus on one position above all the others – and that’s the goalkeeper.
It’s always nice to receive some advice from legends of the game, even if you think you don’t need it. Whether or not Leno feels that way we don’t know, but either way, he’s been told by legendary goalkeeper David Seaman that he simply needs to wait for his chance in the first team. It sounds like pretty simple advice and that’s because it is, but understandably, it can be a little bit frustrating to sit on the sidelines after being brought in as a major signing during the summer.
Arsenal signed Bernd Leno from Bayer Leverkusen this summer for €25million, but the German goalkeeper, previously linked with a number of other clubs, is yet to play a minute of a competitive game for the club. Why is that?
One of the novelties brought in by manager Unai Emery is the team’s tendency to play the ball out from the back when starting attacks, as opposed to hitting it long towards a forward who would then be expected to hold it up and engage his teammates. Petr Cech, while a very good goalkeeper on his own ground, is quite obviously struggling to adapt to this particular demand. Such approach needs a ‘keeper good with the ball at his feet, decisive and accurate in his passing, and the former Chelsea man has made several mistakes while attempting to fulfil Emery’s ideas in this aspect.
Arsenal goalkeeper Petr Cech has come in for some stick from certain sections of Gunners fans. I wrote an article recently about whether the veteran goalkeeper should be dropped or not. Spanish boss Unai Emery insists on using the former Chelsea goalkeeper, despite the fact that he is obviously not comfortable with playing out from the back.
Not his strong point
Even at 36 years old, Cech is still a very good goalkeeper, despite some errors in the last few seasons. However, as Watford goalkeeper Ben Foster recently stated, playing out from the back is not his strong point.
Arsenal signed Germany international goalkeeper Bernd Leno from Bayer Leverkusen for a fee of £22million. The 26-year-old was expected to replace veteran stopper Petr Cech as the Gunners first choice at the start of the season. Instead, the German has started the Gunners three Premier League games on the substitute’s bench.
Convinced he made the right decision
Leno is convinced that he made the right decision to join the Gunners this summer. He told Sport Bild: “I am convinced that my change was the right decision,”
“I’m not crazy. It may take a few weeks or months, but my time here will come.”
At this moment in time, Petr Cech is still considered to be Arsenal’s number one man despite the fact that the club invested a lot of money in Bernd Leno over the summer. We’ve seen two big names competing for one spot at a major European team before, so that part of the equation probably shouldn’t feel all too unusual – but just because we ‘can’ have the debate, doesn’t mean that we should have to.
Friday saw the Italian transfer window shut and saw Arsenal players leave for Serie A clubs. Joel Campbell joined Frosinone, youngster Stephy Mavididi signed for Juventus and backup goalkeeper David Ospina joined Napoli on loan.
Out of the trio, only Ospina has featured in the Gunners first-team in recent seasons. A move was almost inevitable for the Colombian number one after falling down the goalkeeping pecking order at Arsenal due to the arrival of German goalkeeper Bernd Leno.
Cech and Leno first choice goalkeepers
As soon as the Gunners signed Bernd Leno from Bayer Leverkusen this summer, it looked obvious that the north London club were overstocked in the goalkeeping department.
One of the Gunners problem areas in recent seasons has been in goal. Petr Cech had previously been one of the best goalkeepers in the world. However, since joining Arsenal Cech has regressed as he has grown older.
Some of the world’s best goalkeepers of bygone days have played well into their thirties or even forties in some cases. However, at 36 years old, the former Chelsea stopper seems to be making more mistakes as the seasons go on.
Cech now has a potential replacement at the club
When Arsenal signed German international goalkeeper Bernd Leno from Bayer Leverkusen in the summer, many expected the new arrival to be installed as the Gunners first choice instantly.
According to Spanish sports publication Marca, Arsenal are in advanced talks to sign Switzerland international goalkeeper Yann Sommer from Borussia Monchengladbach this summer.
Too many goalkeepers
The Swiss star’s arrival would make the goalkeeping situation in north London very interesting. The Gunners already had two international goalkeepers at the club in Petr Cech and David Ospina before the summer arrival of Bernd Leno from Bayer Leverkusen.
If the Gunners did manage to sign Sommer, Ospina and Cech would both leave the club in the summer. One of the pair is already set to leave the club, with the other staying and likely being number two to new arrival Leno.
The signing of German goalkeeper Bernd Leno has been officially confirmed, for a reported fee of £19.3 million. The 26-year-old joins from Bayer Leverkusen, with whom he made over 200 appearances across an impressive tenure. Now, however, it’s time for him to try something different, as he attempts to make a name for himself in the Premier League.