Could rotating Goalkeepers actually work for Arsenal?

Most Arsenal fans would have been expecting Aaron Ramsdale to be on the starting team sheet on Wednesday night, but after a great performance against Everton on the weekend, Arteta opted to stay with David Raya In goal and Ramsdale on the bench.

A big call from Arteta had some Arsenal fans worried and confused why Ramsdale, who arguably was one of the main reasons we got back into the Champions League, wasn’t starting our first game back in UCL in 7 years. But Arteta like always, seemed to have a plan.

David Raya who had an impressive debut for Arsenal against Everton last weekend walked away form that game with a clean sheet. Looking comfortable in the colours of red and white, he began his time with Arsenal with a win. Raya who had a great season with Brentford last season, looked like he had something to prove to the Arsenal fans and anyone who had doubted him.

Starting in his first Champions League game, Raya looked to be in complete control the whole game against PSV, saving 4 shots on target and thumping almost pin-point accurate passes up the field. Playing a full 90 minutes and having 58 touches throughout the game. He looked like he’d been playing at Arsenal forever.

Raya is really good with his feet, almost playing as an 11th outfield player, helping take pressure off his backline and gives more options to work the ball around the field, spreading play. Completing 5 high claims and most importantly, walking away with another clean sheet in just his second start for the club, which has got some Arsenal fans asking the question “who is our number one?”.

Arteta was asked in his post-match press conference why he picked Raya to start over Ramsdale and he said this “It’s the belief that I had in the team that I wanted to play with the expected opponent. Not only that, the changes that we made with all the players, it was for the same reason” Via

Raya clearly brings something different to the team than Ramsdale and has had the perfect start to life at Arsenal, but does he deserve to start over Ramsdale? Keeping Goalkeepers happy can be a hard task because they never want to be second choice and its not common for a manger to rotate goalkeepers often, but could it work at Arsenal? Could we see Ramsdale starting some games and Raya starting others? It’s a risky move from Arteta and could end with one of them feeling unwanted.

What’s your thoughts Gooners? Do you think rotating Goalkeepers often can work?

Daisy Mae

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Tags Aaron Ramsdale Raya


  1. It was a fantastic opportunity to take Raya on loan for this season, a top keeper wanted to come in and try his luck and Brentford agreed to it. Ramsdale seems up for the challenge too having come in himself and taken Leno’s place.

    I doubt it will last more than one season though, by the end of the season we will know which one Arteta favours and the other will not want to be here.

  2. Hmmm this is really dicey…. For me with how good both of them are, I will say give Raya a match in EPL this week and midweek in the UEFA Champions League give Ramsdale. The following EPL match give Ramsdale and another following UEFA Champions League give Raya.. just like that… Rotating both of them in both competitions.

    1. I would prefer a sort of “king stay” method for our GKs. Perhaps swapping between keepers whenever they didn’t achieve 3 clean sheets on the trot. Anytime a GK gets 3 clean sheets, they get their time on the first 11 extended. Something like that will definitely put or GKs on their fingertips.

  3. It could work but not for more than one season if it last that long.

    Want to go on record, if Ramsdale does not start against the Spuds it could well be the beginning of the end.

    Taking Raya on loan from Brentford is one of the strangest deal have seen in the modern game, surely some gentleman agreement between Arsenal and the Spaniard must be in place, else how could a top goalkeeper decide to settle for a number two position on the bench unless his agent are in a permanent nap.

    The best solution in my opinion is to allow Ramsdale to play the remaining premier league games and the Spaniard the cup games and even then, it’s still against conventional wisdom.

    I honestly think though, Raya could make Arsenal more press resistant something like Onana at Man United.

      1. Yes they are both good with the ball at their feet, but Onana just join Man United and instantly take playing out from the back to a different level there.

        1. Still below Ederson, you sure have not witnessed how he’s got them into trouble numerous times. Be careful what you wish for mate.

    1. I dont know about a Gentlemans agreement but Raya who is Spanish was coached by a Spanish coach, who is now head goalkeeping coach at Arsenal. I wonder what Ramsdale thinks about that. The coach must have had some input and he is supposed to be an impartial coach? NOT!!!

  4. Arteta following the footsteps of his mentor Pep Guardiola; remember Joe Hart got replaced by Ederson Morales and Man City has not looked back on that decision since then. That might just be the same fate for Aaron Ramsdale.

  5. There are a lot of games to be played. we need both keepers to compete. The boss should not decide number one and two. We deserve to have two best

    1. I tell you. That’s why I suggested one of them given a game in the EPL. Then midweek the other goalkeeper keeps in the UEFA Champions. The following weekend the one that kept in the UEFA Champions League keeps in the EPL. Then in midweek the other one keeps in the UEFA Champions League.. It should be like this starting from the Totenham match.
      Just like that..

  6. Very harsh on Ramsdale ,was part of the team that got us back into the competition but didn’t get his debut which surely he deserved.
    Now I’m not saying Raya is a crap keeper as I think there is little between them ,just seemed off to me ,as for rotating keepers no ,you play your best every game in the PL and CL .

  7. Personally I still think Ramsdale is number one, as it made sense to play Raya in our last two games given how weak the opponents were.

    If we’re serious about buying Raya, then MA has to play him in the league as well as the cup games to have a good look.

    However, if Raya starts the NLD then Ramsdale is now our number two in my opinion.

    1. There’s no disaster jor… Where is the disaster? Both goalkeepers are not little kid goalkeepers. So what are you saying? So you expected one not to play among the two? So you wanna lose a good goalkeeper because you got two good goalkeepers?

  8. Ramsdale and Raya are both top Quality 1st Choice Goalkeepers. I doubt very must either will settle for being 2nd Choice which leads me to think one or the other will be playing elsewhere next season.

  9. Our fans have very mixed opinions on our two keepers, from RAMSDALE IS EASILY TRH BETTER TO RAYA IS DIFFERENT CLASS.
    All opinions are valid but they are JUST fan opinions and make no difference to what MA decides. As for me, I care only about MA s judgement and am very happy to go with what HE decides.

    We fans , frankly, dont know much AT ALL about what REALLY GOES ON within the club.

    Some of us think we do, but in reality, as all the myriad fan opinions clearly show, we DON’T!

  10. My opinion, both keeper’s are good but Raya brings much more confidence to the team, and his concentration level during matches is also better

  11. My opinion, both keeper’s are good. but Raya brings much more confidence to the team and his concentration level is also better

  12. Do we really expect the players, especially defender, to learn and adapt to the playing habits and styles of two different keepers in just one season? For example – Keeper A prefers back passes to the left, but Keeper B prefers passes to the right. A recipe for confusion and disaster, IMO, considering how important the keeper/sweeper is to our style of play.

    The best solution is the number one keeper starts all games unless he is injured. Case closed.

    Not stepping on Rambo’s toes. Just saying what’s in the best interest of the team.

    1. What are you saying? What’s in passing the ball to the right or left by a goalkeeper becoming a disaster that defenders can’t adapt to? The defenders must be very daft if they can’t adapt to the playing styles of their goalkeepers which in my opinion shouldn’t be trouble so these kind of experience defenders we have.

  13. I don’t understand why Arsenal fans complain about everything. Isn’t it our wish to have top quality in every position. Now two top goalkeepers and some of us insist that one should play all our matches while the other sits on the bench and wait for odd games. I believe giving each of the goalkeepers a fair share of games will keep them happy and bring out the best in each of them. The only way any of them will feel unhappy is if he doesn’t get fair game time. Even the third goalkeeper deserve games also. If we think Ramsdale should be starting all our matches then there’s no need having Raya at all. We would just use Hilson as the second goalkeeper, and hope he comes well if anything happens to Ramsdale.

    1. Thank you bro.. I don’t know why you would have two great goalkeepers and you would only use one of them throughout a season

  14. Arteta is looking for reaction from Ramsdale. He needs to improve. Too many mistakes end of last season and early this season. He is a bit too hot mentally. Needs a cold headed pro like David Raya around to keep improving. If we want to be an elite club, then elite treatment and elite quality should be prioritised. Period.

    1. Yeah I understand he was later making those little mistakes. But it shouldn’t mean he won’t keep again this season. I still canvass for the kind of rotation I stated in my post

  15. The best part of this arrangement is that Tottenham and other teams will have to train not knowing which keeper they will face. Modern sides do a lot of analysis on keepers weaknesses so good to keep them guessing.

    1. @Nabilo, I love your response, I just don’t get why Arsenal fans on here complain about every single thing, it’s normal to introduce a player we just got with a run of games and Arteta has just done that with Raya, as well as pushing Ramsdale to improve on his lack of concentration, IMO, I’m fine with using both goal keepers, in all competitions, just avoid frequent switches,

      I’m sure, if Onana were in Arsenal,we would be complaining by now,

      We need to trust Arteta and the process, back him up and hope our cheer can motivate the players enough.

  16. If Ramsdale was an elite goalie Arteta would not look to challenge him.

    Ramsdale has lapses of focus, gives up soft goals, and his decisions and distribution need improvement.

    Raya is a perfect GK to show him how it’s done. Calm in goal and accurate with distribution, Ramsdale can learn a lot from Raya.

    Ramsdale is young and far from elite, he should be patient, learn, and his ascendancy will come.

  17. For me, it’s good we have two great keepers. Arteta should give them target so as not seen as being partial. He can give them 3 match target of clean sheet. Starting from Ramsdale. If you have 3 clean sheets, you continue. Once you concede a goal, you dropped to the bench. This will bring out the best in them.

  18. So you are saying he shouldn’t keep again this season right because he lost some concentration recently and gives up some soft goals? and you think he’s going to wait?

  19. Raya is the better keeper much better with his feet and also dominates the box better than Ramsdale does very harsh on him I agree but you have to play your best keeper and that’s Raya!

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