Mikel Arteta must make ruthless Aaron Ramsdale decision as Chelsea keen on Arsenal transfer


I was among the select few who didn't find Arsenal's decision to sign David Raya baffling during the summer transfer window. Some argued that the move would unsettle Aaron Ramsdale but my thought process was the opposite: It will push him.

Matt Turner is a brilliant shot-stopper but his distribution leaves a lot to be desired, an area that Raya excels in. Effectively, the Gunners were replacing Turner with a more well-rounded option to compete with Ramsdale.

Two top goalkeepers competing can hardly be a bad thing but only if the manager, Mikel Arteta, remains fair. Ramsdale was questioned for failing to save efforts from Manchester United star Marcus Rashford and Fulham playmaker Andreas Pereira.

So Raya came into the starting XI. But in recent times, he has looked shaky, to say the least.

The Spanish international was at fault for RC Lens' opener in the 2-1 UEFA Champions League earlier this month and he was sloppy on Saturday as Arsenal drew 2-2 with London rivals Chelsea. He was of course at fault for Mykhailo Mudryk's goal, coming well off his line before conceding from an improbable range when the Ukraine international's cross-come-shot looped into the net.

But this wasn't his only error. A sloppy pass during the build-up phase should have been punished by the Blues with the scoreline still at 2-0 as former Tottenham Hotspur hero Jamie Redknapp levelled considerable criticism at the Brentford loanee after the full-time whistle.

READ MORE: Arsenal predicted XI vs Sevilla as David Raya keeps place and Thomas Partey returns

READ MORE: Every word Mikel Arteta said on David Raya's Arsenal confidence, Bukayo Saka and Aaron Ramsdale

"He looks like a bag of nerves right now," Redknapp said regarding Raya's performance in west London. "Raya is really struggling with the pressure and the scrutiny he's under.

"He's giving the ball away, he's looking like he's always going to concede goals. The situation hasn't helped him.

"People have said that Aaron Ramsdale should consider leaving, but I disagree. I think he should hang in there given the way Raya has given away so many goals. He's not showing that he's good enough to be No.1."

Raya has hardly been terrible but if Arsenal's goalkeeper battle really is a meritocracy, as Arteta has claimed, then Ramsdale needs to come back into the starting XI sooner rather than later. After all, the 25-year-old was hardly taken out of the team because of consistent howlers, he just hadn't been performing at the level required for a title-challenging team.

Considering Raya's errors have been slightly more blatant, it is time for Arteta to reinstate his former No.1 to the team for the UEFA Champions League fixture against Sevilla. Otherwise, he could be causing himself a serious problem as Ramsdale continues to be linked with a transfer to Chelsea in recent times

Adblock test (Why?)