Mikel Arteta has revealed that he has considered substituting his goalkeepers Aaron Ramsdale and David Raya in recent games.
Arsenal’s goalkeeper situation has been a talking point among fans ever since the club made the decision to sign the highly-rated David Raya on loan from Brentford during the summer.
Aaron Ramsdale held onto the starting berth for the first four games of the Premier League season, however Raya was finally drafted in for Arsenal’s clash with Everton on Sunday – a game the Gunners won 1-0 at Goodison Park.
After that win, Arteta was asked by the press about the decision to start Raya ahead of Ramsdale:
“The same rationale that Fabio [Vieira[ played here or Eddie [Nketiah] played instead of Gabriel Jesus. I haven’t had a single question on why Gabriel Jesus hasn’t started. He’s won more trophies than anyone, including me, in that dressing room, but they don’t.
“It’s something that has been historically done like this, but I cannot have two players like this in one position and not play them. David has tremendous qualities like Aaron has, like Karl has, but we have to use them you know.”
Arteta went on exclaim that he has actually considering making an almost unheard substitution of his goalkeepers during recent games, admitting that he “regrets” not doing so:
“It’s like this. I’m a really young manager. I’ve been in this job for three and a half years and I have few regrets with what I’ve done. One of them was that in two occasions, I felt after 60 minutes and 85 minutes, in two games, in this period, to change the keeper in that moment. But I didn’t do it. I didn’t have the courage to do it. But I’m able to take a winger, or a striker, or but a central defender on to drop to a five and hold that result.
“We drew those games and I was so unhappy. Someone is going to do it, and maybe it will be [me]. That’s strange? Why? Why not? We have all the qualities in another goalkeeper to do something when something is happening and you want to change momentum. Do it. It’s a regret that I have.
“Now my feeling is to get everybody engaged in the team. They have to play, regardless of the competition. We have to do it. This is my message.”
Arsenal will be back in action in midweek when they face PSV Eindhoven in their first UEFA Champions League groups stage game of the season.