Rúnar Alex Rúnarsson: A worthy number two?

Aravindhan Ajit
By Aravindhan Ajit
3 Min Read

With the departure of goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez all done but confirmed, Arsenal are set to sign Dijon goalkeeper Runar Alex Runarsson, 25, for a reported fee of £1.5m.

Dijon’s sporting director have already admitted to the fact that the Icelandic goalkeeper was likely to depart to the club. But nobody expected that the potential destination would be to Arsenal.

Runarsson is set to join the North London club to be a deputy for the impressive Brend Leno, who cemented the goalkeeping position which led to the departure of Emiliano Martinez.

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Runarsson’s initial aim was to leave the club to get regular playing time, which he had lost in Dijon in the previous season to Alfred Gomis, which resulted him making only a mere 11 appearences. But now, he’s set to join the North Lodon outfit being aware of the fact that he’s going to a be a back-up to Bernd Leno which leaves the Dijon fans in baffled.

Although the transfer fee involved in this deal is a mere £1.5m which saves a fortune from the reported £20m fee Arsenal would get in the sale of Emi Martinez, Arsenal fans are still skeptical about this transfer and highly doubt that the Icelandic international would be enough to deputize Bernd Leno as efficiently as Martinez did.

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It is a huge call from Mikel Arteta and goalkeeping coach Inaka Cana Pavon to bring Runarsson to the club as a backup. His statisctics in the previous season was not so impressive, having kept no clean sheets in 11 appearences, and only 5 clean sheets in 25 appearences in the 18/19 season.

Inaka Cana Pavon seems to highly rate him as a goalkeeping option, having worked with Runarsson in his early days at Danish side FC Nordsjælland. The experienced coach was initially approaching to recruit David Raya from Brentford (having worked with him previously too), but Brentford are not willing to even consider the option of letting their number 1 keeper leave the club, just after their departure of their star striker Ollie Watkins.

Good with his feet, comes for cheap, Runnarson is set to be the Gunner’s backup goalkeeper above the likes of Matt Macey, Deyan Iliev (academy), although is said to be vulnerable in stopping shots and catching crosses.

Will he step his game up under Arteta? Or is he going to be known as a panic buy for the Gunners?

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