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Transfer News: Arsenal To Renew Interest In £20m Liverpool Man?
Despite the transfer window being closed, there is always transfer gossip doing the rounds in the papers and we’ll keep you up-to-date with the latest news during the coming months. Today, Arsenal are linked with Pepe Reina.
It’s claimed that Gunners boss Arsene Wenger is growing increasingly concerned by the clubs goalkeeping situation and is lining up a bid for the experienced Spaniard.
Arsenal No.1 Wojciech Szczesny is due to return in goal for Saturday’s north London derby against Tottenham after missing the last six weeks with an ankle injury. But while he is still considered as a safer option than Vito Mannone – who has filled in while Szczesny’s been on the sidelines – the young Pole’s form has been questionable over the past 12 months and the Metro claim Wenger is ready to renew his interest in Reina to provide some serious competition for the No.1 jersey at the Emirates.
Wenger tried to land Reina back in 2010 when he was looking for a replacement for Manuel Almunia and the player himself has previously admitted he was willing to consider a move to north London.
The 30-year-old claimed the only reason Arsenal’s £20m bid for him was rejected was because former owners Tom Hicks and George Gillett thought he was an important asset to have on board while they tried to sell the club. Reina has previously said:
‘Arsenal had made their determination to sign me clear by offering £20m, a phenomenal amount for a goalkeeper. Part of me felt that I was well within my rights to consider my future even if I did so with a heavy heart.
‘When Liverpool received the bid, they rejected it. This was not because I had been told that I was too good a keeper to leave. The reason I was given was quite different – and it left me feeling down.
‘I was told that my continued presence was crucial to the sale of the club. I was simply a bargaining chip in the sales process.’
Reina is quoted as saying by the Metro
While we can’t say for sure whether there is any real truth in this rumour, the Metro’s report seems to have very little substance to it. For a start, they claim that Reina “has struggled to regain his place in goal at Anfield following an injury” and suggest that Brad Jones is now considered as first choice at Liverpool.
Jones may have performed admirably in the past few weeks, but it’s highly unlikely Rodgers is ready to bench the man who’s spent over seven years as Liverpool’s No.1 and made over 380 appearances for the club.
Also, I don’t buy into the claim that Arsene Wenger is willing to spend circa £20m on a new goalkeeper when he has shown a huge amount of faith in Szczesny. Wenger installed him as his first choice goalkeeper at just 20-years-old and has always claimed the Polish international would be Arsenal’s goalkeeper for years to come.
Sorry Gooners, for those of you who’d like to see Reina at Arsenal, I just can’t see it happening. Arsene Wenger might be, and probably should be, in the market for an experienced stopper to contest with Szczesny, but Reina won’t be the man he goes for.