David Raya explains why he suits Arsenal’s style of play

Playing from the back is something most managers, including Arsenal’s Arteta, have embraced in the Premier League because of its effectiveness.

The belief is that combining from deep in your own half allows you to retain control of the ball and increases a team’s opportunity to score. Of course, opposition sides will press, but that’s to your advantage, as if you break through their press, you find them defensively exposed, leading to a higher likelihood of scoring.

Other than that, playing from the back makes it hard for opposition players to predict the movement of your attacking players. The ball is always in motion; hence, while the opposition seeks to win possession, they leave much space to exploit.

Mikel Arteta has, in his time, tried to use this system. It is one of the aspects of his game.

The goalie is key to this system, and for the Gunners, Ramsdale has been decent, however, there are one or two doubts about the Englishman playing from the back. Back in July, Mark Goldbridge told talkSPORT, “Aaron Ramsdale is very good shot-stopper, and I do like him, but when you look at him last season, passes per 90, he was 13th in the league. Coming for crosses, second bottom for Ramsdale, save percentage, 12th in the league for Ramsdale.

“Ramsdale is a good goalkeeper, and you can’t read everything from stats, but I don’t think he is a modern goalkeeper You need a keeper to play on the edge of his box in the modern game.”

Interestingly, Mikel Arteta, this summer, pushed for David Raya, one of the finest ball-playing goalies, to join his team. The move is said to bring some competition to his goalkeeping department. However, the new arrival from Brentford has, in his first admissions as a Gunner, made claims to suggest why Arteta should be trusting him for his system, saying via Arsenal.com, “My brother always put me in a goal. With my mates, I always played outfield.

“I enjoyed playing further up the pitch, and I think that’s why I’m comfortable on the ball.

“Next to my house, there were always young guys playing on the futsal pitch. I always played outfield in those games.”

Raya also said: “I’ve seen Arsenal a lot for a lot of years, and since [Mikel] came, he’s made a massive difference to the style of play and to the club. The way the team plays out of the back, being confident and taking possession to the other team is the main thing why I fit into the team. I’m going to try and help as much as possible and we’ll see what happens.”

It is certainly going to be interesting watching out for the rivalry between our two Number Ones this season….

Daniel O

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  1. Raya will be a good relief to arsenal center backs because he tends to kick long and accurate passes to forward line so players like Havertz,Saka and Martineli who are good at holding the ball and having lots of speed to burn will really benefit from him.Our Centre back wouldn’t be found out trying to pass from the back time to time.

    1. Naftali, you make a good point. Playing out from the back loses ANY benefit and any point at all, IF such as “slow daudling on the ball CBs” take simply ages to move the ball upfield.

      Its all about QUICKLY beating the opposition high press to get them out of possession, which is pointless and stil has defensive danger, IF we pass out to daudling defenders and do NOT progress the ball VERY SWIFTLY upfield.
      Beats me why some cannot see that obvious fact. If we can swiftly get the ball upfield and beat the press by an ACCURATE long keeper kick upfield , then surely that is far preferable to slow daudling defence only possession.

      Remember(UGH!!) how such as snail Merts and Koscielny constantly passed the ball, back and forth to each other in pointless an d boring five /ten yard sideways passes only. What a complete waste of time that was!

      Boring and unproductive too. I hated it and often said so, FORCEFULLY TOO, on JA.
      Without REAL pace in moving the ball, NO side can expect to ever beat other top sides consistently.


  2. Ospina was also agile, a good distributor and a ball-playing GK, yet he was lousy at handling long crosses and dead-ball situations. Hopefully Raya will be better than Ospina and at least we have a highly-experienced homegrown GK

    OT: Romano said Maguire could be Arsenal’s option to replace Timber and they might be talking to Laporte. I hope it isn’t true, because we’ve got a plethora of CBs

    1. gai, forget the Maaguire nonsense . Surely it is plain to all JA thinkers that a playerlike MAGUIRE wouold be almost the last Prem based player of all that a fluidity and pace believer such as MA would want. Its plainly ridiculous and to be ignored.

      1. I think the rumor could be true, Jon. Because Maguire is still one of England’s main CBs and could click well with Ramsdale/ Rice/ White in our defense, despite his failure at Man United

        1. Do you seriously think so! Well I ought to be surprised by nothing on JA after the hundreds of astonishly wrong predictions I have read from Gooners on JA over the years. Just another to add to that long list.

          I note you have not said WHY you think as you do.

          To my analytical mind , I suggest that the very reason he is not used at MAN UTD, is the very reason he will not be of interest to us
          . Too slow, too mistake ridden, not mobile enough.

          1. Despite the possibility, I also hope he won’t come. Because he would likely not be able to dethrone Saliba, Magalhaes and White, unless he’s willing to play in the cup competitions only

    2. It’s unthinkable to sign another defender we have enough of them. What we should be thinking of signing is a good competition for Saka a quality winger or otherwise Arteta should start giving Maquiho some minutes in games. As skillful as Viera is, his lack of pace and sgility is a disadvantage in competing with Saka.

  3. I think one of the major reasons Arteta signed Raya is because of his skill set to play out from the back. It would help to avoid high pressing oppositions who Ramsdale a few times have fallen victim to. It also gives the team dynamism for attacks with speed because the wingers would Lways benefit the most. Raya skill set will actually encourage Ramsdale in training to improve on his limitations. Football is tending towards ball playing goal keepers. Arteta I guess is trying to fill every loopholes from last season he really wants to challenge for trophies this season.

  4. Sorry JA, but this is absolute bollox.

    The whole point of having goal keepers is to keep the ball out of the net and Ramsdale excels at that. If it isn’t the case then throw Pepe in if you want someone who can distribute with his feet.

    Give me all the stats you want but the eye never lies. Raya looks good because he played behind an inferior defense, his distribution on paper looks brilliant because most teams never played with a low block against Brentford like we did last season and in addition he had Toney and Mbemuo to hit who rarely lost aerial duels in which we don’t have except of Havertz.

    This transfer is a worry to me when we could have focused on alternative for Jesus/Nketiah or support for Saka instead of rocking a steady ship at the back except for the Gabriel and Zinny brain farts.

    Utter nonsense. I’m on team Ramsdale.

  5. Raya is certainly a good GK, he was sought after by United and Chelsea. However, Ramsdale is tried and tested in the Arsenal team and has made some wonderful saves in matches to keep Arsenal in the game. It will be an interesting competition between the two of them to stake claim for the no.1 spot. Whoever wins, it will be only good for Arsenal.

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