You thought Arsenal were done on the incomings front for a while, didn’t you?
Don’t worry, so did I.
News of the club’s interest in Brentford goalkeeper caught everybody off guard with David Ornstein dropping the bomb on Sunday afternoon. The Bees value the Spaniard at £40m, with Arsenal said to be in talks with the west London club over a transfer.
Brentford are happy to let Raya depart, but only for their asking price.
Given Arsenal’s need to strengthen higher up the pitch, the club’s interest in a lucrative keeper given their current depth chart at the position is certainly curious. But there might be a logic to the madness.
3 reasons why Arsenal are ‘exploring’ David Raya transfer
Here are three reasons why Arsenal want to sign the £40m-rated Raya.
1. Raya’s an excellent goalkeeper
There’s a reason why Brentford are demanding such a high fee for a player whose contract expires next summer. Raya’s a superb goalkeeper and he’s coming off an excellent Premier League season.
The Spaniard’s post-shot expected goals minus goals allowed (essentially the number of goals prevented) was the fourth-highest in the league last season at +5.0. He also successfully caught or punched the second-highest percentage of crosses (8.7) in the division and attempted a league-high number of passes (1367).
While Raya’s distribution over long distances caught the eye in west London, he’s also more than competent in the build-up phase.
An excellent shot-stopper who’s athletic, brave, and superb with the ball at his feet; Raya is as close as it gets to Arteta’s ideal goalkeeper, but Ramsdale isn’t far off that ideal either.
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