• News

Arteta sends message to axed Arsenal star and praises his replacement

Mikel Arteta, Arsenal
Getty Images

The Arsenal manager opted for a change in goalkeepers during a hard fought victory over Norwich City in the Premier League.

Mikel Arteta has praised Aaron Ramsdale for a ‘terrific’ performance in goal for Arsenal but insists Bernd Leno is still a part of his plans.

A year after regaining his place in the Gunners goal from Emiliano Martinez, Leno made a rare appearance on the bench for Saturday’s 1-0 win against Norwich City in the Premier League.

Arteta instead favored €28 million summer signing Ramsdale over his regular No.1. The former Sheffield United keeper justified his selection by delivering a composed performance and, most importantly, a clean sheet.

“I think he was terrific,” said Arteta in a post-match conference about Ramsdale’s first Arsenal game at the Emirates Stadium.

“It’s not only what he did on the technical side, it’s what he transmits, his energy, his chemistry with the backline, how he reacts, his body language – I think he was top.”

Ramsdale, who is seen as a future Arsenal No.1 keeper, will hope to stay in favor with Arteta, especially as Leno’s long-term future in north London remains up in the air.

Arteta added: “We have two fantastic goalkeepers. Never forget what Bernd has done for us and what a good goalkeeper he is.

‘I had to make a decision and today I believed Aaron was the right one to do so, like in any other position we have to decide, and that’s what we decided today. I want to see how they perform. Now we need performances and we need to win football matches.

“Whoever gives the better performances, transmits better things, and is more reliable is going to play.”