When Arsene Wenger revealed that Petr Cech would miss up to four weeks through injury, Arsenal fans could be forgiven for thinking their title chances were over.
The former Chelsea goalkeeper has been brilliant for the Gunners this season, playing a key role in their title charge as they look for Premier League glory for the first time since 2004.
Add that to the fact that back-up goalkeeper David Ospina had been far from convincing during his cameo appearances so far and there were reasons to worry for Gooners.
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The Colombian made a horrific mistake earlier in the season against Olympiakos in the Champions League which contributed to a 3-2 defeat at the Emirates.
But in Cech’s absence in the crucial north London derby on Saturday, Ospina made a string of fine saves to keep Arsenal in a match which they eventually earned a point from.
A defeat would have, almost certainly, ruled the Gunners out of the title race but after Alexis Sanchez equalised with 15 minutes remaining, they still have an outside chance of catching Leicester, who they trail by eight points.
Wenger insists that he was always confident of Ospina’s quality as a keeper and wasn’t surprised by his heroics at the weekend.
"I believe that I told you many times in these press conferences that I rate him as a top class, world-class goalkeeper,” Wenger told reporters, as per Goal.com.
"I never questioned his quality. I think he had been unfairly treated when I played him against Olympiacos and it was a shame that at the time his stats did not come out in the press and that's where I thought he got unfair treatment.”
Wenger was speaking ahead of his side’s FA Cup fifth round replay against Hull on Tuesday.
The club are looking to win the competition for the third consecutive time, something that hasn’t been done since 1886 when Blackburn Rovers completed the feat.
With Arsenal still in a title race and the second-leg of their last-16 clash against Barcelona coming up, Wenger had admitted he will make chances for their clash against Hull.
"We made 10 changes in the first game and I believe we will have a team with a good chance to qualify, no matter who plays. David Ospina is an example of that on Saturday,” the Frenchman said.
"We will have to make changes to keep the balance right but I have same respect [for the opposition] and exact same idea that every player in my squad can play and can win the game,” he concluded.
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