Arsenal switch focus to long-term keeper target with obvious connection

Samuel Bannister

Arsenal have identified Freddie Woodman as a potential new backup goalkeeper, according to reports.

Arsenal are on the search for a new number two after summer signing Runar Alex Runarsson failed to impress. There have been rumours that he could leave on loan to regain his confidence.

That would mean Arsenal would need fresh competition for Bernd Leno, who last season had Emiliano Martinez keeping him on his toes but is now relatively unchallenged.

Mikel Arteta has already confirmed that Arsenal are looking to address that area. There have since been rumours about a number of potential signings.

For example, Barcelona backup Neto was one option, but Ronald Koeman has warned Arsenal away. Therefore, they are having to turn their attention elsewhere.

Now, Arsenal are looking at the domestic market. According to The Sun, they could try to sign Woodman.

The 23-year-old is currently in the second season of a loan spell at Swansea from Newcastle. He has never played in the Premier League but has established himself as one of the Championship’s best shot-stoppers.


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Newcastle will ultimately have the final say over his future, but with both Martin Dubravka and Karl Darlow among their ranks, they may not have a space for Woodman.

That may prompt the former England under-21 international to consider his future. The situation at Arsenal may mean he would have more opportunities there.

Newcastle retain high hopes for Woodman in the future and have him under contract until 2023. However, long-time admirers Arsenal may give them a decision to make.

There is an obvious connection behind the Gunners’ interest in Woodman. His father Andy – a former keeper himself – is the club’s Head of Goalkeeping.

But a previous report from Football London has indicated that Arteta also likes Woodman’s profile. A move could make sense, with the fact that he is a homegrown player also another beneficial factor.

Arsenal learn Buendia price tag

Arsenal are also looking at outfield reinforcements and there is another player currently plying his trade in the Championship that appeals.

As they look for solutions for creativity, one name that remains on their radar is Norwich midfielder Emiliano Buendia.

Buendia impressed in the Premier League last season despite suffering relegation. Arsenal could offer him the chance to return to the top flight.

However, after losing the likes of Jamal Lewis and Ben Godfrey after their relegation, Norwich are keen to keep hold of their remaining key players as they push for promotion.

Therefore, they have set a huge asking price upwards of £40m for Buendia’s services.

If Arsenal want to strengthen in two positions, they may be persuaded to consider cheaper targets.

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