More and more chaos continues for Arsenal.
Times are not promising for Arsenal fans at the moment. They find themselves in yet another managerial conundrum, with a large proportion of fans wanting Unai Emery to be fired as soon as possible. The Gunners sit in sixth place of the Premier League but if results carry on the way they’re going, they could fall further behind the top four.
However, it appears that the North London side will have more to worry about than that. According to reports from The Sun, their first-choice goalkeeper Bernd Leno is on the radar of German champions Bayern Munich.
Bernd Leno doesn’t get the recognition he deserves in this Arsenal side. In fact, one can go as far as to say they wouldn’t be in the position they’re in without the goalkeeper in between the sticks. His fine displays between the sticks have saved the Gunners many points they should have lost. It’s just a shame that the defence in front of him is abysmal.
Arsenal’s continued defensive frailty has contributed to the 27-year-old keeping just eight clean sheets from 48 Premier League appearances (Premier League) but he has largely impressed since cementing his place in Unai Emery’s new-look team.
Leno still has four years remaining on his current contract and is valued at €30m as per Transfermarkt. However, according to The Sun, Bayern will turn their attentions to the Arsenal star with Barcelona’s Marc-Andre ter Stegen currently out of reach and happy at Camp Nou. Neuer turns 34 in March and has battled back from a metatarsal injury which ruled him out for nearly 10 months between September 2017 and June 2018 to re-establish himself as one of Europe’s premier goalkeepers.
For Bayern Munich, a gradual revolution is on the cards. At 33, veteran goalkeeper Manuel Neuer has been a true servant for the club but is approaching his latter years at the club. At 27, Leno still has many good years in him (for a goalkeeper and would be an ideal replacement for the Bavarians.
Leno will be a good fit for Bayern
Ball playing goalkeepers are surely the trending targets in football now.
Hoofing the ball up the pitch isn’t the fashionable thing to do in football these days and as Pep Guardiola’s famous Barcelona side demonstrated on countless occasions, the goalkeeper needs to be efficient in possession, comfortable on the ball and have an excellent range of passing.
Leno is one of the best ball-playing goalkeepers around and as expected, his style of play is similar to that of current Bayern shot-stopper Manuel Neuer.
In terms of making saves as well, Leno is a busy man at the back. The 27-year-old makes an average of 4.1 saves per game which is more than that of Neuer at 2.8 saves per game (Sofascore). Although much of Leno’s numbers are influenced by Arsenal’s faltering defence but regardless it shows to a large extent how Leno has been decent individually but has been let down by his defenders on numerous occasions. With better defenders at Bayern Munich, Leno’s numbers would surely take a turn in the positive swing.
It’s no surprise Leno leads the pile for most saves so far in the Premier League this season with 49 saves so far after 12 games.
Moving further, Leno will be no stranger to German football. Bayern Munich fans will be familiar with the German goalkeeper despite him not making many displays for their country. He has had to watch on from the shadows of Manuel Neuer and Marc Andre ter Stegen. He has also played in the Bundesliga as he was the shot-stopper for Bayer Leverkusen before his move to Arsenal.
Lastly and what should be most worrying for Arsenal fans. The truth is, a move to Bayern Munich would benefit Leno massively and he will know that. Joining the biggest side in Germany will give him the pedestal required to get noticed by Joachim Low and the Germany national team.
Unai Emery, if he is even at Arsenal then, would like to focus on in-comings in January. He will have already compiled a shortlist in his head of all the signings he wants to make. The last thing he wants to be worrying about is losing one of his most important players.