Gabby Agbonlahor has now issued his verdict on David Raya amid Arsenal preparing a bid for the Brentford goalkeeper’s transfer to offer Aaron Ramsdale new competition.

Arsenal have been busy in the window this summer as manager Mikel Arteta strives to build on last term’s success. He led the Emirates Stadium outfit back into the Champions League for the first time since 2016/17, having ended the Premier League season as the runners-up.

Arteta’s team even spent 248 days atop the table before Manchester City claimed their third top-flight title in a row. Finishing the season five points shy of the Citizens has since tempted Arsenal to sign Kai Havertz and Jurrien Timber, as well as Declan Rice in a club-record move.

Arsenal target David Raya in action for Brentford at Emirates Stadium
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Arsenal hold talks with David Raya about a transfer from Brentford

Now, Arteta has turned his attention to strengthening his depth between the sticks in north London. Fabrizio Romano reports that Arsenal have spoken directly to Raya about a transfer from Brentford. The 27-year-old also wants to join Arsenal over any move to Bayern Munich.

Arsenal held positive talks with Raya having sought to explore his interest in competing with Ramsdale at Emirates Stadium. The Gunners already have an offer in mind, as well, with Edu preparing a €30m (£25.5m) bid, per Calciomercato. Inaki Cana also backs any deal for Raya.

But Arsenal will likely need to improve their offer if Edu and Brentford are to agree on Raya’s transfer. The Guardian, which reports the Bees have already rejected a loan offer for the 27-year-old from Bayern Munich, notes that Brentford value the Spanish shot-stopper at £40m.

Raya only has one year remaining on his contract at the Gtech Community Stadium. He has also made it clear to Brentford that he does not want to sign new terms. Any departure will be a huge loss for boss Thomas Frank. Raya was among the Premier League’s best last term.

What has Gabby Agbonlahor said about David Raya to Arsenal?

Brentford FC v Fulham FC - Pre-Season Friendly
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Ramsdale has been Arteta’s clear number one between the sticks since joining Arsenal from Sheffield United for £24m, rising to £30m, in 2021. The England international ousted Bernd Leno within two Premier League fixtures of joining the Gunners and has kept the role since.

Through a potential 75 top-flight games since leaving Bramall Lane, Ramsdale has started in 72. He has also kept 26 clean sheets to 82 goals conceded, of which he enjoyed 14 in 22/23 to 43 goals conceded over 38 games. He was the Gunners’ only player to play every minute.

Raya, meanwhile, also played all 3,420 minutes of the Premier League season for Brentford. He further kept 12 clean sheets to 46 goals conceded as the Bees finished the term in ninth. Now, Agbonlahor feels Raya is a better goalkeeper than Ramsdale as Arsenal eye a transfer.

“I think Raya is a better keeper,” Agbonlahor told talkSPORT. “You know when you watched him at Brentford [that he was impressive with] some of the saves [that he made and when] playing from the back, as well. He’s so good.”

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