Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has insisted that he wants goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale to remain with the club, despite losing his starting place to David Raya.
Ramsdale had the best season of his career in 2022/23 as the Gunners launched a first Premier League title challenge in 15 years, earning himself a place in the PFA Team of the Year. But the arrival of Raya on an initial loan from Brentford has seen the Englishman dropped.
A number of clubs have been linked with Ramsdale, especially now with the January transfer window just over three weeks away. But Arteta is clear that he wants the 25-year-old to stay.
“I want Aaron with us. I am very happy to have two very, very good goalkeepers and Aaron is staying with us,” the Arsenal boss said ahead of facing Luton Town on Tuesday.
“He’s willing to play. Like any player, he wants to play for Arsenal. That’s what he wants to do. Then [playing for England] is a consequence. And as well for England it’s not like he has started a lot of games, so hopefully we can help him be better here so then he can play for England.”
Arteta stressed that the intention at Arsenal is always to “add to what we already have”, justifying the need to bring in a second goalkeeper with number one aspirations.
But the Spaniard ultimately refused to give any concrete information as to what might happen in January: “I cannot tell you that any Arsenal player is not going to leave in January. Or he is to stay here for the next three years. I won’t say it.”
Arteta had been asked specifically about Newcastle United following a long-term injury suffered by number one Nick Pope at the weekend. 90min understands that Ramsdale is of interest to the Magpies but is considered a long-term target and a January approach is unlikely – Newcastle have since been offered the chance to sign David de Gea, who remains a free agent without a club.
Wolves have been monitoring Ramsdale’s situation as current starter Jose Sa is linked with the Saudi Pro League. Former clubs Sheffield United and Bournemouth have also been tipped to move for him. Chelsea hold a similar interest to Newcastle in that Ramsdale is considered a possible target for the long-term, but not someone they would move for in the upcoming January market.
90min reported at the end of November that Arsenal are not interested in allowing Ramsdale to leave the club next month but have made clear to the player that they would in summer. He was initially strong in his belief that he would fight Raya for the starting place but would now like to leave in pursuit of the regular football he is suddenly no longer getting in north London.
After spending a few games on the bench immediately after his arrival, Raya was installed as Arsenal’s new number one following the September international break. He has played every Champions League game and his only Premier League absence since then was for the trip to parent club Brentford for which he was ineligible while on loan.
90min understands that Arsenal have already communicated to Raya that, as expected, they intend to trigger the £27m purchase clause in his loan agreement. Although it could be exercised at any time, the plan is for it happen in summer to give financial priority to the search for a new midfielder and striker in January. The initial reason the deal was structured as a loan with option to buy was to help keep Arsenal on the right side of Financial Fair Play regulations.