Bernd Leno is starting to find his feet as Arsenal number one

A number of different goalkeepers have tried to fill the gloves of David Seaman in the years following the legendary Arsenal shot-stopper’s retirement. There was Jens Lehmann, who enjoyed a degree of success, but was prone to the odd blunder. Wojciech Szczęsny was given s shot, but never looked the part.

Much like Szczesny, Lukasz Fabianski was brought through as a youngster and was eventually sold. The signing of Petr Cech was a shrewd one and the Czech held the number one shirt at the Emirates Stadium for a number of years, but even he has looked shaky in recent times. This is why the summer signing of Bernd Leno was hailed as so significant.


The German goalkeeper took some time to find his feet in England, with Unai Emery favouring the veteran Cech at the start of the season. But over time Leno worked his way into the team and has grown in stature with every game he has played. His performance in the North London draw against Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday was his best to date for the Gunners.

Leno’s best moment came in a double save to first deny Christian Eriksen and then Moussa Sissoko. The second stop, in particular, was a stunner and the German struggled to explain how he made the reflex save after the match. I don’t know what happened, everything was so quick,” he said. “Sissoko shot, I didn’t see the ball, I just reacted. I think the best saves are always those when you don’t quite know what happens.”

It felt like a coming of age moment for the 26-year-old. Leno hasn’t always looked comfortable in an Arsenal shirt, making a series of errors earlier in the season. However, Leno has now made the number one place his own in recent weeks and if the Gunners are to salvage their season by finishing in the top four, you get the feeling that the German goalkeeper will have to play a big role.

Arsenal are still a long way from where they want to be under Emery, but the goalkeeper’s position was one problem that needed resolving. There are other deficiencies that have yet to be addressed, but with Leno now impressing between the posts focus can now be applied to other areas of the pitch.

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