Is Leno just going to be a bench warmer for Germany?
The worries I have for our players when on international duty is that they will be there to just make up the numbers and be benchwarmers.
I said as much with Bukayo Saka. Although he didn’t play in England’s first group game against Croatia, all is not lost as Gareth Southgate may choose to rotate and play him in the next few games.
Now we know Granit Xhaka is a guaranteed starter for Switzerland, and likewise for a fit Kieran Tierney for Scotland, but Bernd Leno I fear will not get a look in for Germany. After losing losing to France in there opening game, if you look at sites like this one here you can see by the betting that Germany need to win their other games and can’t afford to rotate their keepers.
Manuel Neuer is pretty much the number one for them. Even though Leno hasn’t had the best of seasons, there is no secret we are looking for a new goalkeeper, but that does not mean he is leaving us. But I can’t help but feel that he is just going to be a bit part player in a Germany team that will clearly be using Neuer in every single game, while Leno will be on the side-lines merely watching and NOT gaining anymore game time or experience.
Who knows though, Joachim Low may choose to chop and change his keepers at this tournament but if they begin to win and pick up the points they need then surely he will stick with a winning team right?
As much as we want our players who have gone on international duty to get minutes under their belts you can’t help but think that Leno will be just a benchwarmer for most of this tournament unless something serious (god forbid) happens to Neuer to keep him out.
And, say that does happen, it is not even guaranteed that Leno will be the second choice keeper, as they have another decent back up goalkeeper in Eintracht Frankfurt’s Kevin Trapp who used to ply his trade in Ligue 1 with PSG, and took the place of the injured Barcelona keeper Marc-Andre Ter Stegen for third choice.
There is no confirmation Leno will be leaving us, so he still could be an Arsenal player and the number one for Arsenal next season.
And, if he does end up staying, you can’t help but feel that the possible lack of playing time for Germany won’t be doing him any good, in terms of game time and gaining that much needed experience and confidence that will actually make him worthy of wearing the number one jersey at a club as big as Arsenal, now will it…