Reports coming from France over the weekend have claimed that Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has outlined young Toulouse goalkeeper Alban Lafont as a long-term replacement for veteran Petr Cech.
It is believed by Le 10 Sport that, should Arsenal’s current number two David Ospina leave the Emirates this summer, then Wenger has been keeping an eye on Lafont ahead of a potential move.
And with Cech being 35 years of age and heading towards the end of his footballing career, it seems like Wenger is wasting no time in planning for the future by setting his sights on the exciting Lafont.
Who exactly is the 18-year-old Arsenal are chasing?
Whilst most people would have heard of one young goalkeeper that’s new on the block – step forward AC Milan’s Gianluigi Donnarumma – Alban Lafont has quietly been impressing for Toulouse in France.
After making his debut at just 16 years of age– becoming the youngest ever Ligue One goalkeeper whilst doing so – he’s gone from strength to strength, playing over 60 times with 19 league clean sheets.[interaction id=”59622912f2d4938713c39e21"]
11 of these came last season as Toulouse comfortably finished in mid-table, including impressive performances against Paris-Saint Germain and Marseille where he had shut-outs both home and away.
Despite his slender frame he comes across as a big presence between the sticks, quickly coming off his line to snuff out impending danger and showing little fear when going in for a 50/50 challenge.
Although his ability under the high ball still needs a bit of work, his agility and ability to get down quickly to shots, and his overall reflexes in goal, show that there’s an awful lot of potential in him.
Bringing in the youngster this summer would allow him ample time to grow and develop as a goalkeeper under the experienced wing of Cech, and it could turn into a masterful move by Wenger should it come off.
With Ospina linked with an exit to Turkey, as reported by ESPN, and with Cech arguably enduring his worst season in the Premier League, now seems the right time for Arsenal to bring in some new blood.