This May Arsenal keeper Petr Cech turns 36 and after enduring a miserable campaign by his standards the veteran stopper’s future at the Emirates is uncertain. That uncertainty only heightened following the news that Arsene Wenger is finally stepping down after 22 years in North London because if the wizened coach had a flaw it was to show too much loyalty to his under-performing stars. A new coach however will come in; address the problem areas coldly and almost certainly seek out a new and reliable number one from which to build a fresh dynasty.
Precisely who that new number one will be though is up for debate with a host of names linked in recent months. Here the Cutter assesses the names in the frame.
It’s no surprise that the confident and unflappable Bayer Leverkusen ace is being talked about as Cech’s potential successor given that he was favourably compared to the Czech legend even as a teen.
Now 26 Leno knows his worth having previously stated that he’d like to play for Real Madrid one day. As for travelling to the World Cup this summer as Neuer’s understudy he said: “Joachim Low knows what I bring to the table, and he knows me as a person. I always perform”.
With Liverpool and the Gunners both reportedly keen and the extremely highly rated Slovenian admitting this week that his short-term future is undecided we can anticipate Oblak being front and centre of feverish transfer speculation this summer.
The 25 year old’s £87.5m buy-out clause will obviously be a huge factor but when you’re buying one of Europe’s top three goalkeeping talents it is not necessarily an obstacle to a club looking to over-haul and challenge for honours next term.
With Real Madrid repeatedly being linked to David De Gea and Thibaut Courtois ahead of an expected summer splurge Navas felt the need to speak out this week declaring that he isn’t afraid of any competition. Even so the Costa Rican is a pragmatist and being the wrong side of thirty would he really be content to settle for the Bernabeu bench? A big move beckons.
An outside bet but frankly the Argentine international is too good to be considered a mere cup specialist for Manchester United and will surely seek out pastures new in the months to come.
Persistent rumours last January suggested that Arsenal wanted to swoop then and it’s not inconceivable that their interest will resurface, especially if their priority targets swiftly become unavailable. If you prefer better odds in the meantime check out Free Bets UK.
While Timo Werner and Naby Keita grab most of the headlines for RB Leipzig their Hungarian keeper quietly dominates his area with an authority and excellence that has seen the giants flocking to the Red Bull Arena.
Once on Liverpool’s books (and loaned out to Tranmere among others) the 27 year old has flourished of late and his speed of thought and lightning reflexes makes him a major boon for any side.