Amid rumours that Roma want to buy Wojciech Szczesny, Arsenal would be totally insane to let him go.
Let’s play pretend for a minute.
Arsenal signed Petr Cech from Chelsea two seasons ago. He did exactly what we expected him to do in the first season, but this campaign, he has looked even weaker on his near post, and has struggled to dominate as we would expect him to.
Cech is also 34 and while some keepers play on until they’re nearly 40, Arsenal are not going to keep Cech as number one for much longer.
David Ospina, while trusted in the Champions League and Cup is clearly not trusted to be the first team goalkeeper – otherwise why buy Cech?
Arsenal need a keeper.
Now pretend that Szczesny is not an Arsenal player.
Despite being valued at around £14m, Arsenal can sign him for free – the only club able to do so.
So far this season, he has 52 saves, seven cleansheets, a distribution accuracy of 81% and no individual errors leading to goal. He’s 26, entering his peak as a keeper, has experience in the Premier League, Champions League and Serie A and is a full international.
Would you not be interested him if we didn’t already own him?
Arsenal fans are naturally wary.
They remember an arrogant player who is prone to massive errors (although many of those stem from his bravery and determination to be pro-active in the box – he takes more risks and makes mistakes, but he also make more saves).
But that’s not the player you would be signing.
This is a more mature model. He is a player who has grown and settled during his spell in Italy.
Why on earth would you let that go knowing that you’d have to replace him with somebody with less experience?
You wouldn’t, not unless you were stupid.