Arsenal strike Raya agreement amid Arteta 'frustrations' with Ramsdale

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Arsenal strike Raya agreement amid Arteta
Arsenal strike Raya agreement amid Arteta 'frustrations' with Ramsdale

Arsenal have agreed personal terms with Brentford goalkeeper David Raya, as Mikel Arteta plans to turn up the heat on current No.1 Aaron Ramsdale.

Raya, 27, is keen to join the Gunners but the move is being scuppered by Brentford's asking price, believed to be £40million. Should the Spaniard complete his switch then Ramsdale will face serious competition for the gloves ahead of the new season, which for Arsenal begins this Sunday against Manchester City in the Community Shield.

The Gunners' pursuit of Raya - who's also a target for German giants Bayern Munich - has come as a surprise to many, as Ramsdale has performed well under Arsenal boss Arteta for the past two seasons since his £30m transfer from Sheffield United. But in pre-season, his frustrations with the England international have become apparent.

During the course of his side's tour of the United States, Arteta could be seen turning away in anger at a number of mis-hit passes from his first-choice shot-stopper. Ramsdale, who in May signed a new long-term contract, was also fallible for the opening goal of the Gunners' lethargic 2-0 defeat to Manchester United, allowing Bruno Fernandes ' effort to squirm through his hands.

Although it's nothing major compared to Ramsdale's impressive work since arriving at the Emirates, reports of Arsenal's interest in Raya signals that Arteta either wants to push the 25-year-old to improve or install a new signing between the posts. Regardless of his plans, reports from Italy state that the Brentford want-away has reached an agreement in principle over personal terms.

Mikel Arteta's dream Arsenal line up as last-gasp January transfers are secured rriddqixxiqezinvMikel Arteta's dream Arsenal line up as last-gasp January transfers are secured

After bringing in Dutch goalkeeper Mark Flekken from Freiburg, Bees manager Thomas Frank has already confirmed that his club are "waiting to sell" Raya, whose contract expires in 10 months' time after rejecting multiple proposals to sign a new deal. "I hope [we get an offer]," Frank declared earlier this week.

Arsenal strike Raya agreement amid Arteta 'frustrations' with RamsdaleMikel Arteta wants Aaron Ramsdale to improve next season (OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

Have your say! Should Arsenal be signing David Raya? Give us your verdict in the comments section.

"David would like to go. That's fine for us. If a club want to buy [him] they just need to find out the price. So I guess it should be simple, but apparently it's very difficult! He's worth £40m – I'd love to get that for him. He was one of the four best 'keepers in the Premier League last season.

"What is the price for a player with one year left? Declan Rice went to Arsenal for £105m - is that a fair price? And Harry Kane, one year left, and they're talking about £150m?

"Anyway, it's not up to me. It's always complicated. Two sides of the coin when it comes to negotiations and we meet somewhere in the middle."

On the other hand, it's unlikely that Arteta would offload Ramsdale if Raya comes in. Earlier this year, the Arsenal boss affirmed: "He has been really, really good and probably against the odds. Because when you look at his past and where he was coming from, he got relegated twice, it was difficult to imagine it.

"But we saw he had that character, charisma and personality to play for our club and he had the potential qualities to feed into our way of playing. When you see the development he had in the past two seasons I think he is exceptional."

Nathan Ridley

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