Jamie Carragher has hailed Aaron Ramsdale as the signing of the season so far and I doubt you will find any Arsenal fans who disagree.
Has there ever been a player that transformed the opinions of fans as quickly as Aaron Ramsdale did when he arrived at Arsenal?
For a large section of the fanbase, who paid more attention to Ramsdale’s relegations than his ability, Aaron Ramsdale was a £25m waste money.
By the end of his first game, he was a club hero in the making.
The 23-year-old quickly ousted Bernd Leno as the number one at the club and, with nine clean sheets in 14 Premier League games, it’s hard to argue with the call made by Mikel Arteta.
His 81.8% save percentage isn’t too shabby, either and is second only to Chelsea’s Edouard Mendy, but not by much (82.7%).
It’s also worth noting that Mendy is six years older.
“I went for Ramsdale [as signing of the season] because it was almost the biggest surprise to me,” Carragher said on Sky Sports’ Monday Night Football.
“When they brought him in I thought they were bringing him in as back up and because he was an English player for the quota.
“He hadn’t impressed me in his Premier League time at Sheffield United and Bournemouth.
“But it’s not just the saves he’s made. He’s a personality, he’s a character. Already, to go into that dressing room – yes, there’s young players in there but it’s still a huge club, going into Arsenal as a young lad, a young goalkeeper.
“He’s got a presence about him that I didn’t see that he had and he’s had a big impact on the team.”
Aaron Ramsdale admits going on strike to force Arsenal move
Aaron Ramsdale refused to play for Sheffield United against West Brom after he felt they were messing him around with his Arsenal move.
Aaron Ramsdale’s transfer to Arsenal was one of the sagas of the summer, dragging on for more than two months as the Gunners tried to agree a fee with Sheffield United.
Speaking on Ben Foster’s YouTube channel, Ramsdale revealed that he’d informed the club he wanted the move, but that he was willing to keep giving his best on the pitch and on the training ground in Sheffield until Arsenal made an acceptable offer.
That changed in early August, as Arsenal started to up their bids but the deal showed no signs of getting done.
That obviously changed things for Ramsdale, who felt Arsenal had now made an acceptable offer.
Reports at the time suggested the goalkeeper was considering making a transfer request.
According to Ramsdale himself, a comment from someone within Sheffield United Football Club then pushed him over the edge.
“Normally, if you don’t get your move, you are rewarded with a new contract,” Ramsdale said.
“So we said that (to Sheffield United).
“Someone at the football club – [I] won’t name names – said ‘we didn’t ask him to take less money when he was conceding goals at the start of last year’.
“So, that was when I basically went ‘no, I won’t play against West Brom, do what you want.’
“I didn’t train for the first two days…and the manager was like ‘no, he’ll be alright, he’ll play.’
“Tuesday came and I was like ‘no, I’m not playing.’
“Then Wednesday, the team news comes out that I’m not in the squad. Then within 45 minutes, or 10 minutes before kick-off, I was on my way down (to Arsenal).”
As Foster points out on the show, it worked out for everyone in the end.
Perhaps Sheffield United didn’t get quite as much as they were pushing for (there were some reports of £40m at the time), but they still got a significant fee.
Arsenal obviously got their man, and Ramsdale got his move.
For Ramsdale, it was a chance to join a club with a guaranteed Premier League status, pushing for Europe.
He knew he’d at least get minutes in the cups, and Arsenal were in a good location for his partner – who works in London.
It’s probably worked out a lot better than Ramsdale or Arsenal hoped, so it’s a good thing the young goalkeeper pushed the move through.