‘He has been really, really good… probably against the odds’: Mikel Arteta hails the development of ‘exceptional’ Aaron Ramsdale… as he credits Arsenal No 1 with bouncing back impressively from ‘tough’ social media criticism when he joined
- The player had been relegated three times before joining Arsenal at the age of 23
- Goalmouth heroics at Anfield during Arsenal’s 2-2 draw saw him widely praised
- Ramsdale: A key part of Arsenal’s title push having won over their fans
Mikel Arteta praised Arsenal goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale for the ‘exceptional’ progress the player has made during his time at the north London club.
Now a vital force in Arsenal’s Premier League title charge, Ramsdale previously suffered relegation during spells at Bournemouth and Sheffield United.
Ramsdale was on superb form during the Gunners’ 2-2 draw against Liverpool at Anfield, with the Reds holding the England international’s feet to the fire and forcing him into a number of heroic saves to keep the tie level.
Speaking ahead of Arsenal’s London derby against West Ham on Sunday, Arteta said Ramsdale’s rapid rise had come ‘against the odds’.
‘He has been really, really good and probably against the odds,’ Arteta stated.
Mikel Arteta has praised Aaron Ramsdale’s ‘against the odds’ rise in the Premier League
The 24-year-old pulled off a number of fine saves to keep the tie level against Liverpool
‘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 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.’
Ramsdale has the third-most clean sheets in the league this season, with 12, behind joint leaders David de Gea and Nick Pope, from Manchester United and Newcastle respectively, who have 13 save.
The 24-year-old was the target of widespread social media criticism after the announcement of his signing with the north London club in 2021, but Arteta stressed that the club had done its best to protect him from the jibes in the early stages of his career at the Emirates.
‘It was tough, he needed some support and we had to protect him, but he was ready to handle that,’ Arteta said.
Ramsdale suffered three relegations, including at Sheffield and Bournemouth, before his move
Arteta was able to support and encourage the goalkeeper to reach his league potential
‘He knew that was going to happen, we discussed that before: “You’re coming from this situation, you’re going to Arsenal and you’re going to have a lot of question marks over your head.”
‘And you have to do that.’
After the Liverpool draw, Gary Neville on punditry duty dubbed Ramsdale the difference in the title race as Arsenal prepare to fend off a charge from Manchester City.
Pep Guardiola’s side are just three points behind the long-time league leaders after two points were dropped on the road last weekend.
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