Pundit suggests Arteta is keeping Raya in goal to save face

Former Chelsea defender turned pundit Frank Leboeuf has weighed in on Mikel Arteta’s persistent selection of David Raya over Aaron Ramsdale as the first-choice goalkeeper for Arsenal.

Despite Ramsdale being signed in the last transfer window, Arteta has opted for Raya as his number one. The decision to make Raya the first-choice goalkeeper is attributed to his proficiency with his feet. However, this choice has left some fans waiting to witness a clear distinction between the two goalkeepers.

Many pundits and supporters have criticized Arteta’s decision, and the latest to do so is Frank Leboeuf. He suggests that Arteta might be retaining Raya in the starting lineup to avoid appearing weak in his decision-making, rather than due to Raya’s superiority as a goalkeeper.

He said, as quoted by The Sun:

“Arteta has to be stubborn because he made a mistake in my point of view so he has to carry on with Raya.

“Because Arteta made that decision he has to stick with it otherwise he’s going to lose all the credit he made on the decision he made. It doesn’t make any sense to me.

“Ramsdale was the goalkeeper of the season last season but it wasn’t what he wanted.

“I think he wants to copy Guardiola with what he did with Manchester and getting the right goalkeeper who can dictate the game from behind and be the first good passer.”

Just Arsenal Opinion

Raya and Ramsdale are two outstanding goalkeepers and it is tough for Mikel Arteta to have both men to pick from.

The Gunners’ gaffer is doing good by ignoring the noise from outside and ensuring he sticks to his guns.


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Tags Frank Leboeuf


  1. I cannot understand the so called “pundits” do not mention the two mistakes Raya did in the first galf of the city game that could have put us two down.
    He was not influential in any of the goals that Arsenal scored. I say this because Raya there is this believe that his distribution can create opening.

  2. Not sure the pundit is right about the gaffer saving face.
    Surely Raya was a nervous wreck in the early stages of Arsenal 1- 0 win against the champion, but to his credit, he recovered well to maintain his clean sheet.

    One massive traits am learning about Raya, he’s far less to be rush in possession, deliberately taking his time to lure opponents onto him before releasing the pass, am a little nervous about this but it seems a deliberate strategy love by the gaffer.

    This is a style that is reminiscent of what we see from Man city.
    If a short pass is not on , Raya will strike the ball long distance to try catch out side who squeeze up for the press.

    It is clear that the gaffer prefers his keeper to perform in this manner with the ball at his feet, so no face saving the gaffer choice is clear.

    1. You make an interesting point about Raya’s nerves. The early part of the game made me jittery in response to his jitters.

    1. Tony, could it be that they’ve just won the PL five times, the CL along with the treble?
      Who wouldn’t try to, not only emulate that, but actually improve on it?

      After last season and this season to date, I don’t think MA has to save face with anyone, apart of course, from the last few games of last season!!!!!!

  3. I’m not sure it’s about saving face
    Arteta has shown a degree of patience with Havertz but I’ve no doubt that he’d drop both him and Raya if they fail to deliver. He wants to win, not carry players.

  4. Ramsdale has done nothing wrong and I would say a far more confident goalkeeper than Raya. Bring him back and let him prove that or he will go as soon as he can, I know I would. As for Haverts, well ho cost too much, did not perform at Chelsea so why did Arteta choose him? Plenty better players out there who would love to play for the Gunners given the chance.

  5. Ramsdale and Raya both are good goalkeepers but I think Raya is a bit better. Don’t forget his outstanding performance against the spurs. Ramsdale sometimes has the tendency to leave the goal and this caused the Gunners to lose some matches last season.

    1. You forget so quick Ramsdale’s save against Leicester City?

      Imo, Ramsdale is the better of the two and has just been wrongly treated by the gaffer

      1. What of Southampton first goal last season as we were fighting for the trophy??You people calling for Rambo back forgetting that he committed 6 errors leading to goal last season.With such a deffense how does de gea get the golden gloves???

    2. The main reason he was replaced I believe MA still remember his mistake against sporting lisbon and Fulham this season. He needs to learn and be more serious if he want to be our no 1.

  6. It’s funny how one sided the so called pundits and fans alike keep moaning about Raya ousting Ramsdale.

    Had the noise been the same when Leno got benched for the better Ramsdale, I’d understand where this is all coming from but I don’t remember any such biasness (even after countless mistakes in games) no one ever said diddly-squat! So wonder why the uproar now???

    Anyways the same reason Leno lost his place in the starting eleven to Ramsdale is the same reason he’s lost his place to Raya (clearly the best keeper wins) so we need to get behind whatever the gafers decision is insted of always looking for excuses to get toxic towards one of our own players.

    All these ‘ex this’ or ‘well past their best before date pundits’ with their dead opinions and statements should keep The Arsenal nd our players out of their mouths or talk bout other teams players if they want to ‘keep relevent’.

    In MA I trust and so should we all, it’s that simple.

    1. Shak, its not “that simple”.
      “Blind Faith” were a great band, not applicable to football or managers (“in MA I trust and so should we all….”)

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