Mikel Arteta warned of damaging Arsenal dressing room with crunch Ramsdale call

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta is at risk of damaging his dressing room if he continues to select David Raya ahead of Aaron Ramsdale. That’s the view of former Gunners midfielder Emmanuel Petit, who claims it would be another bitter pill for the England international to swallow if he is benched against arch-rivals Tottenham.

Raya is expected to keep his place in the side for the North London derby after recording back-to-back clean sheets against Everton and PSV Eindhoven.

Speaking via Betway, Petit warned the saga is creating awkward tension that could yet reach boiling point: “We all see that Arteta wants to play out from the back with risks while under pressure but if he put Ramsdale on the bench against Spurs, that would be a big blow for him.

“That would be a strong message from Arteta to Raya – that he’s the No.1.

“Again it’s a risk because that could damage the good relationship in the dressing room but I’m pretty sure he will put Ramsdale on the bench.”

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Arteta revealed after the 1-0 win at Everton that he is looking to revolutionise the usage of goalkeepers and he believes opposition-dependent rotation could be crucial to Arsenal’s success moving forward.

While acknowledging the stakes are high for goalkeepers who are playing under additional pressure, Petit has ordered Ramsdale to use the recent setbacks to his advantage.

The former Gunners midfielder added: “Goalkeepers need confidence, if they make one mistake that costs you a goal, all of a sudden you have pressure on your mind and criticism from the press.

“Ramsdale must do his best not to become annoyed about the situation, he needs to remain calm and compete to nail down the first position once again.

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“Competition in every position is a good thing and Arsenal have big targets to reach if they want to have a successful season.

“They’re back in the Champions League after six years and they need to have different plans for the opposition.”

Raya, whose initial loan from Brentford is likely to be made permanent next summer for £27million, completed 12 of his 17 long passes against PSV.

Arteta has hinted that Raya’s distribution gives his compatriot the edge over team-mate Ramsdale, whose prospects of displacing Jordan Pickford as England’s No.1 goalkeeper for Euro 2024 now look bleak.

Liverpool Jurgen Klopp previously paid tribute to Raya’s passing range after a 3-3 draw at Brentford in 2021 by claiming: “He could wear the No.10 shirt.”

Petit is in agreement that Raya’s ball-playing ability provides Arsenal with another string to their bow.

He concluded: “I can understand why Arteta wants to use Raya because you could see when they were under pressure against Everton, he remains totally composed.

“He has no stress with the ball at his feet and he plays like a central defender at times. He is among the best with his feet.”

Neither side is yet to taste defeat in the Premier League this season after collecting 13 points from their opening five matches.

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