It seems like years since Arsenal could proudly boast a dependable number one who didn’t regularly drop clangers – well, it seems like years because it is years.
Argentina international Emiliano Martinez looked as though he could be the man to end all that, but for reasons very much unknown, he was flogged to Aston Villa and the rather error-prone Bernd Leno regained the gloves after recovering from injury.
That decision appears to be one Mikel Arteta is regretting, as a year later he’s keen to address his goalkeeping position by bringing in a big money signing. His rumoured target? Sheffield United’s Aaron Ramsdale, interestingly.
The Blades have slapped a whopping price tag of over £32m on Ramsdale’s head – perhaps owing to his trip to Euro 2020 with England – but it definitely feels like there’s better value for money out there.
So, with that in mind, 90min has inevitably taken on the task of identifying alternative goalkeepers Arsenal should be looking to snap up for the same price, or preferably less. Let the searching commence…
It seems absolutely absurd that Arsenal are targeting Ramsdale when Sam Johnstone is readily available for a far cheaper price.
Both experienced pretty similar Premier League campaigns last season in that they were required to make about 25 saves-per-game – the only difference is Johnstone is better than Ramsdale.
West Brom have already accepted they’ll lose their number one this summer and given the fact Johnstone could go for shy of £15m, moving for him seems like a bit of a no-brainer.
David Raya has been head and shoulders above every goalkeeper in the Championship for the past two seasons and his form has seen him linked with a number of Premier League clubs.
Funnily enough, Arsenal have been one of the sides credited with the strongest interest in the Brentford number one, but they seem to have abandoned their pursuit.
You might think there’s no way the Bees would sell such a talented goalkeeper before kicking off their maiden Premier League season, but their business model suggests otherwise.
Brentford are renowned for buying players on the cheap before selling them for top dollar, and having signed Raya for just £3m you can guarantee they’d fancy their chances of finding a replacement if a big-money offer came in.
We’ll champion a move back to the Premier League for Wojciech Szczesny any time we get the chance.
The enigmatic goalkeeper is rumoured to be open to the idea of a move back to north London, and since moving to Juventus back in 2017 he’s developed into one of the finest goalkeepers in Europe.
Szczesny certainly wouldn’t be cheap, but with the Poland international now in his 30s and Juve desperately trying to generate cash to freshen up their squad, the Gunners could ask the question at the very least.
The future destination of talented youngster Gianluigi Donnarumma was one of the big transfer talking points earlier this summer, and now he’s been confirmed as a Paris Saint-Germain player it’s Arsenal’s time to pounce.
Keylor Navas will almost certainly be used as back-up next season, and given his immense talent it’s unlikely that he’ll be willing to settle for weekends on the substitute’s bench.
At 34 he’s no spring chicken, but he’s still top quality and he’d solve Arsenal’s goalkeeping problems for the next couple of seasons at least.
Nick Pope is one of those goalkeepers whose name is constantly mentioned when a big club starts searching for a new number one, yet nothing ever seems to materialise.
The Burnley shot-stopper is evidently good enough to cut it at a top side, and at 29 he’ll know he probably needs to start looking for a move away if he’s to win silverware at some point in his career.
Sean Dyche would likely drive a hard bargain, but if you offered the Clarets £30m for Pope’s services it’s hard to imagine them turning it down.
Despite the majority of the footballing world thinking Unai Simon made his name at Euro 2020, the Spain goalkeeper has been earning plaudits aplenty during his last couple of seasons at Athletic Club.
Simon did endure something of a horror moment against Croatia at this summer’s European Championship, but he also looked very impressive at times. Aged just 24, he’s still got plenty of time to develop too.
The Spaniard isn’t quite the finished article but he’s an upgrade on Leno and Arsenal could do a lot, lot worse.