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SUBLIME RAMSDALE CAN KEEP RAMPAGING CITY AT BAY

Arsenal started the season on the worst possible note, losing
their first three matches but an incredible run of form since
September has catapulted them from the basement of the English
Premier League table to the Top-Four.

 

Arsenal have seen a number of standout players at the heart of the
resurgence including Emile Smith Rowe, Gabriel Martinelli Takehiro
Tomiyasu and Bukayo Saka but no one has been quite dominant as the
new goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale.

 

Not a few eyebrows were raised when Arsenal splashed a whopping
£25million on a goalkeeper who suffered successive relegations with
Bournemouth and Sheffield United but the Englishman is fast becoming
the best goalminder in the division.

 

He was initially viewed as a backup to the then number one, Bernd
Leno, but instead he instantly became Mikel Arteta’s first-choice option
between the sticks before dazzling supporters with his displays.

 

With nine clean sheets from 16 top-flight games this campaign, the
acrobatic stopper has gone from strength to strength at the Emirates.

 

Ramsdale has won the Arsenal’s Player of the Month award for each
of the last two months, while he’s also been nominated on two occasions
for the Premier League Player of the Month.

 

Arteta has been praised for the way his team plays but Ramsdale actually deserves
even more accolades with the way he lays the foundation for Arsenal’s improved
performances with his exceptional distribution and all-action playing style.

 

That’s not all, he is also a fantastic shot-stopper pulling off incredible
saves some of whom have even been tipped to win safe of the year award.

 

Arsenal have been slammed for lacking players with deep leadership
skills on and off the pitch but they don’t have to look too far for a solution
to the problem, Ramsdale’s presence and characteristics in the vital area
and the way he organises and even chastises his teammates during games
set him up as the man to lead the club’s new generation.

 

‘It’s not just the saves he’s made, he’s a personality, he’s a character,”
Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher said of the goalie.

 

“I just think he’s got a presence about him that I didn’t see that he had,
and I think he’s had a big impact on the team.”

 

He is one player Manchester City Manager Pep Guardiola should be
worried about when they arrive at the Emirates Stadium for a league
match against Arsenal on Saturday (today). City are on the rampage,
they are eight points above second-placed Chelsea but they know they
are facing a side capable of pegging them back.

 

Guardiola’s men put Arteta’s army to the swords in the reverse fixture
but Ramsdale was not part of that 5-0 defeat and he is fired up to stop
the firebrand attack of the Citizens.

 

He has faced City four times in his EPL career during his time with
Bournemouth and Sheffield; he conceded seven goals in all with the last
two matches ending in one goal apiece but being with a more solid side
now, he will be hoping to secure his first clean sheet against a side with
the best frontline in the country.

 

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