According to The Telegraph, Turkish side Altay’s move to sign Arsenal goalkeeper Runar Alex Runarsson has collapsed.
The Iceland international joined the Gunners from French club Dijon last summer. He was brought in to replace Emiliano Martinez at the Emirates, but we later realised that the 26-year-old is nowhere near ready to play regularly in the Premier League.
Arsenal really struggled without a quality backup goalkeeper in the first half of last season. Edu and Mikel Arteta had to bring in Maty Ryan on loan from Brighton in January to provide cover for Bernd Leno, but the Australian has now left as well.
What next for Arsenal and Runarsson?
It is very clear that Runarsson has no future at Arsenal. It’s still weird that the Gunners decided to bring him in to replace a goalkeeper who had made a massive name for himself in the back end of the 2019/20 season.
Arsenal will surely be open to bids for Runarsson this summer, but nobody knows where an offer will come from. The 26-year-old still has three years left on his contract, and even though the Gunners won’t demand a big fee for him, we’ll still want to recoup most of the £1.8 million (Guardian) we paid to sign him.
However, it will be really difficult for a relatively small overseas club to afford that after the financial impact of the global pandemic, especially if the former Dijon man refuses to lower his £40,000-a-week wages. (Spotrac)
Big problem for Edu
Arsenal have to bring in a new goalkeeper irrespective of what happens with Runarrson. Edu has a few names on his wish list already, but if the report is to be believed, the Gunners technical director has a big problem now.
It is claimed that Arsenal’s transfer plans for a new goalkeeper will be impacted by Runarsson’s future at the club. The report hints that the Gunners may struggle to bring someone in to replace him if he doesn’t leave in the coming weeks.
That really complicates things. Leno is our only reliable goalkeeper at the moment. Runarsson simply isn’t good enough, while although Arthur Okonkwo is a big prospect, he isn’t ready to feature regularly just yet.
If Runarsson blocks Arsenal’s chances of signing a new keeper and if Leno gets himself injured at some point next season, we’ll be in big trouble. Edu simply can’t let that happen, but he may be left with no choice with the way things are looking at the moment.