Arsenal Transfer News: Bargain goalkeeper targeted by Gunners

  • John  Reid
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta

Arsenal have been linked with a move for former Fulham goalkeeper turned free agent Marcus Bettinelli, the Daily Mail reports.

What’s the latest transfer news involving Marcus Bettinelli?

The report discloses that a number of Premier League clubs are interested in signing the 29-year-old – namely Arsenal, Chelsea and Aston Villa.

The 6 ft 4 shot stopper was on loan at Championship side Middlesbrough last season, but his contract with parent club Fulham has now come to an end. 

How did Bettinelli perform last season?

The former Accrington Stanley man made 42 appearances for Middlesbrough, conceding 27 goals and keeping 13 clean sheets.

WhoScored rated his performances for the season at just 6.25, however, with FBref showing he ranked a mere 16th in the division for total saves.

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Why do Arsenal want to sign Bettinelli?

Arsenal’s interest in Bettinelli likely comes down to the fact that they need to replace at least one goalkeeper in the first-team squad – perhaps two before the transfer window is over. 

Mat Ryan, who was on loan with the Gunners last season, returned to Brighton and has now joined Real Sociedad.

Turkish football journalist Ege Engin reported a few weeks ago that Alty S.K. want to sign Rúnar Alex Rúnarsson.

Should Rúnarsson join Ryan in leaving Arsenal, Bernd Leno would remain as the only established option at Mikel Arteta’s disposal. 

With that in mind it is no surprise that Arsenal appear to be looking to add another goalkeeper to their squad.

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Would Bettinelli be a wise signing?

Bettinelli would probably not be the most exciting acquisition for the Arsenal support. Signing someone who last played for a Championship side that failed to earn promotion isn’t the most eye-catching arrival.

On the plus side though, Bettinelli is available on a free transfer, so signing him could allow Arsenal to splash the cash on some more exciting targets while strengthening a weakened department.

Furthermore, Bettinelli might not feature that often. Ryan made just three appearances last season, but Transfermarkt shows that he was on the bench for Arsenal 13 times, as second choice goalkeeper.

That will likely be Bettinelli’s role at the north London club, so it makes sense for the Gunners not to make a large investment in a player who may only feature a handful of times in the starting XI. 

Likewise, Bettinelli is at least well-experienced in English football, with 238 senior appearances under his belt already throughout his career.

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