Arsenal goalkeeper dynamic is set for a shakeup this Saturday as Aaron Ramsdale eyes a return to the starting line-up in the Premier League.
Mikel Arteta’s preferred first-choice goalkeeper, David Raya, is ineligible to play against his parent club Brentford, as per Premier League rules governing loan players.
Since the international break in September, Raya has claimed the No. 1 spot, starting in every Premier League and Champions League match for the Gunners. However, being on loan from Brentford, with a potential permanent deal of £30M in the works for next summer, Raya cannot participate in matches against his parent club.
This situation opens the door for Ramsdale to reclaim his starting position in goal for Arsenal this weekend.
Why Aaron Ramsdale has to return to starting XI against Brentford
The goalkeeper rivalry between Ramsdale and Raya has been a subject of media attention, with Ramsdale acknowledging the scrutiny. Despite the competition, both goalkeepers maintain a positive relationship, emphasising the importance of professionalism and mutual support.
Ramsdale recognises the peculiar nature of the headlines surrounding their battle for the No. 1 spot and stressed the need for both players to stay focused on their performance.
Ramsdale told The Guardian while on international duty: “There’s a lot of talk at the minute. Whether it is me or David who plays, we need to be able to just focus and play but at the same time, it’s a strange, big headline… we have to deal with it, and that is what we are doing.”
Raya echoed the sentiment in an interview with The Athletic in October: “If we didn’t get on, it wouldn’t work. We work professionally really well together. There’s days where I come in and I’m down because of the situation, and he picks me up, and for whatever reason, there might be a day where he’s down, and even though I’m suffering and hurting for not playing, I have to stand up and be able to push him.”