The strange thing about a backup goalkeeper is that they shouldn’t really be getting on the pitch unless it’s a cup game you don’t care about or if disaster strikes with your first choice stopper.
It means all you really want is a safe pair of hands who might not do enough to win you every game when they play, but they certainly won’t let you down and cost you any points.
Runar Runarsson hasn’t lived up to that billing since arriving at Arsenal with some shaky and unconvincing performances, so it led to them signing Maty Ryan from Brighton to act as the back-up to Bernd Leno:
? Welcome to The Arsenal, @MatyRyan!
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) January 22, 2021
Runarsson will turn 26 next month so he’s past the stage where he’ll improve and develop through training alone, so he’s now been tipped to head out on loan following the signing of Ryan:
Getting an experienced keeper in as back-up to Leno was arguably the most important piece of business Arsenal could have done this summer. Absolutely essential.
Ryan a solid addition to the squad. Imagine Runarsson will now head out on loan.
— Charles Watts (@charles_watts) January 22, 2021
It’s hard to see him doing enough during a loan spell to convince Mikel Arteta that he should be the number one option but he could still improve and boost his chances of taking the number two spot on his return.
It’s also possible that they simply want to get him in the shop window with a view to selling him in the summer, but at least a loan move would give him a good chance of actually playing some football for now.