Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Why Arsenal should keep Szczesny at the club next season

Crippy Cooke in Editorial, English Premier League 18 Jun 2017

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Arsenal’s Wojciech Szczesny has 12 months left on his deal and a host of clubs interested in signing him this summer.

Arsenal goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny is rumoured to be on his way out of the Emirates Stadium this summer, with Juventus leading the chase for his signature.

The Polish international has a number of suitors after a successful two years in the Italian Serie A led to his rise to prominence, but here’s why Arsenal would be better off keeping him.

Petr Cech’s form since Arsenal move hasn’t been consistent

Petr Cech ended the season much better than he started it as Arsenal’s first-choice goalkeeper, but supporters aren’t convinced he’s good enough to be trusted over a full campaign again. Despite being one of the Premier League’s best during his time with Chelsea, the 35-year-old form has been up and down since his £11m move in 2015.

Prior to the switch between London clubs, Cech conceded a goal every 1.25 games, keeping a clean sheet in 46% of matches. At Arsenal, his ratio is 0.98 and little over 40%. He’s had a number of dodgy moments between the sticks too, most notably playing a poor pass out of the back for Chelsea’s Cesc Fabregas to score in a 3-1 defeat at Stamford Bridge.

This season, Cech has conceded 37 Premier League goals, more than he shipped in all but one of his 11 seasons for Chelsea. And with Szczesny boasting more clean sheets (14) than Cech (12) in 2016/17, while being eight years his junior, he’s surely worth retaining.

Szczesny a homegrown choice and cheap replacement post-Cech

In addition to proving himself as arguably the most in-form shot-stopper of the two, Wojciech Szczesny staying at Arsenal makes sense from a business angle. The Polish international joined the Gunners as a Legia youth player in 2006 and has since gone on to become a homegrown player. He made over 180 appearances in all competitions for the Arsenal first-team before his two-year loan spell with AS Roma and would be a cost-effective replacement for when Cech bows out.

The latter has two years left on his deal and isn’t likely to extend his stay at the Emirates, especially given his inconsistent form in the middle of the last campaign, but Szczesny would be ready to deputise from the off if kept. Arsenal would just be covering his wages but wouldn’t need to sign a new goalkeeper. With David Ospina expecting to be sold this summer, the Gunners will have to spend if they don’t keep Szczesny and Wenger might opt against dipping in the transfer market as a result.

So should Arsenal keep Szczesny at the club next season?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Crippy Cooke


Crippy Cooke has somehow written for the Telegraph, Independent, Huffington Post, Zoo Magazine, Daily Mail, ITV Football, MSN Sport, Yahoo Sport, London24 and Bleacher Report among others, despite knowing less about football than your average Fan TV member . The weekly accumulator enthusiast is saving up his winnings to pay for a much-needed hair transplant but grows more on his chin than his head. He lives and breathes football and somehow makes a living writing from it.

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