Arsenal were reportedly interested in signing Newcastle’s goalkeeper, Freddie Woodman, who is currently on loan in the Championship with Swansea but with their signing of Maty Ryan on Friday, the Swans are breathing a sigh of relief.
The 23-year-old has kept more cleansheets in the Championship than any other keeper and was said to be interesting the Gunners, who were trying to replace Emi Martinez.
According to the South Wales Evening Post, Swansea were fearful that Arsenal could move for him this month.
Woodman has kept 14 cleansheets in his 23 league games (and has only conceded 12) while in total he has 15 cleansheets in 25 games (14 conceded) and he may not be off Arsenal’s radar completely, however.
A move for Neto at Barcelona, who put in a transfer request, was blocked by Ronald Koeman. Neto is represented by none other than Kia Joorabchian so that could be one to watch in the summer, especially as there is no option to buy in Ryan’s loan deal.
That’s likely for numerous reasons. Firstly, speed in getting the deal done, secondly Brighton, even though they no longer want Ryan, will be hoping the keeper increases his price at Arsenal while thirdly, Arsenal had no need to commit to an option or obligation.
They will just want to see how things go.
As for Woodman, his dad already works at Arsenal as the u23s head of goalkeeping and is also English which would help our homegrown quota. He’s also a native Londoner, starting his football life with Crystal Palace before moving north to join Newcastle’s u18s in 2013.
Speaking before Arsenal’s FA Cup game against Southampton, Mikel Arteta said: “We are assessing the situation with the three positions on the goalkeeping area and we will find a different solution, probably in this window.”
They then went and signed Ryan.
When asked if Newcastle had made contact regarding Woodman’s situation, Swansea’s Steve Cooper said: “No. Nothing at all. Newcastle have been good through the 18 months he’s been with us in terms of communication.
“But in terms of anything official from Swansea’s point of view we’ve not heard a thing.”
Although Ryan seems like a sensible acquisition, I wouldn’t be surprised to see this position addressed again in the summer.