I, personally, have been impressed with Vito Mannone this season for Arsenal. The Italian was third choice keeper before the season started, but has been thrown into first team action for almost all of the games so far due to lengthy injury problems for Wojciech Szczesny and Lukas Fabianski. Maybe Arsene Wenger has not been so impressed, or the Frenchman just thinks that he is not quite ready, as he is considering a bid for the Liverpool and Spain keeper, Pepe Reina.
It is six weeks until the transfer window opens in January, and Szczesny is ready to return from his injury, so if his form gets back to it’s best then Wenger will probably stick with what he’s got. His form, even when fit, however, has not been great recently. The Polish number one lost his place at Euro 2012 after a couple of blunders, and he was at fault for a couple of goals against the Gunners early in the season.
Wenger tried to sign Reina from Liverpool in 2010, but the move was blocked by Tom Hicks and George Gillett, as Reina reveals. He doesn’t sound too happy about the way it occurred either, suggesting that he might well be open to joining Arteta and Cazorla at the Emirates.
“Arsenal had made their determination to sign me clear by offering £20 million, a phenomenal amount for a goalkeeper. Part of me felt that I was well within my rights to consider my future, even if I did so with a heavy heart.
“When Liverpool received the bid, they rejected it. This was not because I was told I was too good a keeper to leave. The reason I was given was quite different, and it left me feeling down.
“I was told that my continued presence was crucial to the sale of the club. I was simply a bargaining chip min the sales process.”
Reina has been out with injury himself, but is now fit although he has not regained his place from Brad Jones. If Rodgers continues to prefer the Australian, Reina will not want to stay at Anfield, but he would not want to be understudy at Arsenal either. Szczesny is still only 22-years old, however, and could learn alot from an experienced international keeper like Reina. Watch this Space, Gooners.