Adrian Clarke questions whether David Raya is world-class

It is certainly fair to say that Arsenal have improved this season, with Mikel Arteta’s men still top of the Premier League table with two games remaining.

 

The three key signings over the summer were Kai Havertz, Declan Rice and David Raya, and all three have gone on to play crucial role in Arsenal’s season.

The deal for Rice quickly looked to be inspired, while Havertz has found his form since getting a chance to play up front for the Gunners.

The move for Raya was extremely controversial as it came shortly after Aaron Ramsdale signed a new long-term contract at the Emirates. And Raya definitely came in for plenty of criticism in the first-half of the season as he struggled to vindicate Arteta’s decision to replace Ramsdale.

But Raya has now won the Golden Glove for the most clean sheets in the Premier League this season. The Spaniard has done well to dampen much of the talk surrounding his place in the side.

However, speaking on Handbrake Off, Adrian Clarke suggested that he is not entirely convinced that Raya’s place in the side is as secure as he would hope.

“He’s had a good season, he’s proved that he’s got the temperament to be an Arsenal goalkeeper. He’s proved he’s good enough, the stats are brilliant. I think really, this is the ultimate team accolade rather than individually for him. He has been the least active Premier League goalkeeper, he’s been protected better than everybody else in the division. I don’t want to take stuff away from him,” he said.

“If I was to ask you three positions on the team that you think we can upgrade to be a Champions League winning-team, I would include goalkeeper in it. And that might be harsh to say that right now, but it’s my honest opinion. Is he best in class? Is he world-class? I don’t know, I’m not sure that he is, but he’s still had a fine season, and well done to him. But long-term I still think he’s going to have to be better.”

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