Arsenal are in talks to make a shock move for a former Premier League goalkeeper, according to reports this morning.
The club are said to be in talks about a possible deal for Sheffield United and England goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale. The Athletic report that there has now been initial contact between the clubs as Arsenal pursue their interest in signing the 23-year-old.
Valued at around £10million (transfermarkt) eyebrows were raised last summer when Sheffield United shelled out £18.5million to sign the English goalkeeper.
Although he is yet to make a cap, Ramsdale is now among the senior England setup after a late call up saw him replace the injured Dean Henderson. With this in mind, Ramsdale is likely to command a fee of more than double his market value, despite Sheffield United being relegated.
It would be a strange move for Arsenal to make, as lots of data and the eye test seem to suggest that Ramsdale is not really of the quality the Gunners need. As a backup homegrown option, is could be an OK addition to the squad, but not at anything close to £20million.
Arsenal had been heavily linked with a move for Ajax goalkeeper Andre Onana, though these links now appear to have gone cold.
The Athletic suggests that the cooling of Onana’s interest is because the club were hoping that his ban would be reduced enough to allow for him to start the season. This suggests to me that Arsenal targeting a new goalkeeper implies they would like them to be number one, raising question marks over the future of Bernd Leno.
It also means that if Arsenal want Ramsdale as a number one, they, in my opinion, need to seriously rethink that.
The one benefit Ramsdale has is that he is just 23, and so has plenty of years to develop. But he is not near the quality needed to be Arsenal number one right now.