The club is lucky enough to have two excellent goalkeepers vying for the number one spot.
Last season Emma Byrne was the main goalie playing 21 games in the FAWSL League and Cup while Siobhan Chamberlain played six games overall.
Both players are experienced with Byrne being 36 this year and Chamberlain 32.
Chamberlain certainly needs to play more games this season if she wants to be England’s number one at the World Cup.
The current number one, Karen Bardsley, had a poor 2014 club season making while also several mistakes during the last tournament in Sweden back in 2013.
In my opinion Siobhan’s main competition Carly Telford, had a very good 2014 season in contrast, playing behind the best League defence. It seems like she is back to being number three for England and unless she has a consistent run in the Arsenal side, Chamberlain probably won’t be a starter for England at the World Cup.
Emma Byrne has been Arsenal’s number one since 2000.
She has played at a high level for many seasons with some up and some down like any player.
You do wonder if the various Arsenal coaches could have given more games to Chamberlain last season when Byrne’s form dipped a little bit.
Chamberlain played all three rounds leading to the FA Cup final but was dropped for the final against Everton.
The same thing happened for Rebecca Spencer in the Conti Cup under Laura Harvey.
To be fair, Emma Byrne has not let the team down in many of the finals she has played.
Siobhan Chamberlain has been at the top of her game in the her last three seasons at Bristol.
As far as I am concerned she was the best goalkeeper in the FA WSL in 2011 and 2013 and was really surprised to see Bardsley in goal for England during that period.
Siobhan’s game has matured when you compare her now to her Chelsea years and is probably at the peak of her form with a mixture of experience, knowledge of the job and physical strength.
Goalkeeper is a specialised position where you cannot really put players in competition, like, for example left back where Nacho Monreal and Kieran Gibbs compete for the shirt.
You need a clear number one and a number two, because the goalkeeper and the defence need to work together. Also you have to make sure that the number two helps prepare the number one in a proper fashion.
On that front everything went well last season.
It must be a tough job for the Arsenal Ladies goalkeeping coach to choose who is the best player for the team. The players are really close in term of skills level.
So far, Pedro Losa has given half a game to each goalkeepers in the pre-season friendlies so it will be interesting to see who gets the nod in the first competitive game this season in the FA Cup tie away to Millwall to be played at the Den on the 22th of March.