Arsenal goalkeeper coach Inaki Cana says Mikel Arteta has put a lot of faith in him since joining, and he highlights one major improvement the team have made in goal.
Arsenal goalkeeping coach Inaki Cana joined the Gunners from Brentford in 2019, very shortly after the arrival of then-‘head coach’ Mikel Arteta.
At first, Cana wasn’t hugely popular with supporters, primarily due to the disappointing acquisition of Runar Alex Runarsson and the departure of Emi Martinez in fairly quick succession.
But the addition of Aaron Ramsdale and the new goalkeeper’s impressive start to the most recent Premier League campaign has turned things around, even if the keeper couldn’t maintain that same level right to the end.
Speaking this week, Cana admitted he was grateful to Arteta for the chance to work at such a big club, before highlighting one area Arsenal have made progress on the goalkeeping front.
“[Mikel Arteta] gave me the opportunity to be in the Premier League at a great club like Arsenal,” Cana said. “He has always trusted my work a lot, he is a person who respects work, values it a lot, and lets you work with peace of mind.
“We have been trying to make the goalkeeper much smarter and much more proactive, instead of being a traditional goalkeeper who reacts to game situations, what we want is for him to foresee them, to anticipate them.
“Last year we had a different goalkeeper profile and we conceded two one-on-one situations per game throughout the championship.
“We changed the profile and the way of playing a little bit and now we are more proactive. We now have two one-on-one situations every four games. That’s because we play a lot further ahead and prevent a lot more of those situations.”
If Arsenal can ensure that’s a permanent improvement, it will certainly aid them moving forward. The best way to ensure your goalkeeper doesn’t concede is to make it so they don’t face many good chances.
“I think we always have to try to help the goalkeeper,” Cana concluded. “We are here to help this figure who is sometimes a little forgotten and careless in some clubs and countries.
“It’s important to be here (at a goalkeeping exhibition) representing the goalkeeper to give him more strength, because nowadays, in football, everything starts and ends with the goalkeeper.”