Wenger on ‘interesting’ keeper situation


Arsene Wenger has backed Wojciech Szczesny as the club’s number 1 keeper, but says that Vito Mannone’s recent performances have given him pause for thought.

Of the three established goalkeepers at the club the smart money would probably have gone on the Italian moving out on loan as the Polish 1-2 pecking order seemed well established. However, after two clean sheets and two very solid performances, Mannone is now right in the mix according to the boss.

“He has done really well. Vito was allowed to move at the start of the season, to play somewhere,” he told the official site.

“Now he has been No 1 for two games and has at least moved into being a serious candidate to be fighting for the place. At the moment, Wojciech is but there is a fight there and it is interesting.

“We have three goalkeepers who have the talent to play in the Premier League and to fight for the No 1 place. That’s Wojciech, Fabianski and Mannone.

“Usually we keep two and let one go away to play, because they need to play. Now Vito has taken advantage of the fact that Fabianski and Wojciech were injured.”

It is funny how quickly things change in football. There was a collective browing of underpants at the thoughts of Mannone facing Stoke, but after coping with their style of play and keeping a clean sheet at Anfield, there are now debates about whether or not Szczesny should be brought back ahead of him.

Arseblog News feels the Pole should return but that the confidence gained by Mannone as he filled in will do him, and us, a lot of good in the long run.

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There is a danger if Mannone plays poorly that you wreck his confidence after some excellent performances. I´d opt to bring him back for the Capital One Cup.


Trut. He should make like The Weakest Link and bank it. Build up some more form on the training field and get ready to kill it the next time he gets a call-up.

Cygan's Left Foot

I would say keep the Italian in goal. He had two good games and should be kept in merit. Also, puting pressure on Szcz can only be a good thing to keep our super pole on his toes.

What really worries me is not the goal keepers situation, it is the right back when we go to City. Should we play Le Coq or let the inexperience Jenk play against most likely Le cunt. I would go for Le Coq myself but I am sure Jenk will start.

Dr Baptiste

Jenkinson is a natural right back and so will train in that position while Coquelin is now becoming more of a utility player (kind of like a better Eboue). I’d rather have the natural right back than a player who can play there if needed.


Kind of like a better Eboue?

Wash your mouth out young man.

Cygan's Left Foot

Le Coq like Eboue and a Utility player???. I wasn’t bothered when we didn’t sign a defensive midfielder as I know in one or two years this boy going to be better than Song ever was. I said it before and I say it again, Le Coq is the best young player at Arsenal after Jack. This boy a true footballer where ever he plays and I am a big fan. Also, most good CM can play CD, LB and RB. Have you not seen Gerrard playing for Liverpool RB??? I swear I have seen him start for Liverpool at… Read more »

Gooner Al

For once I actually see where Cygan is coming from. Why change something that is clearly working. Mannone has done a great job the last couple of games. Of course he knows he’s not number one but that would be a bit of a kick in the balls to be dropped because Chezzer is fit again.

Don’t get me wrong I’m a big fan of Chezzer, but it’s healthy competition and he needs to know his no.1 shirt can be taken away on merit. Remember when Flamini kept Gilberto out of the team a few years back based on performances.


Have some faith in him and reward him with another game. It will boost he’s confidence massively and push Szcz to work harder and be on top of he’s game. A message out that no ones place is secure.


Absolutely Agree.

Cygan's Left Foot

Sorry, answered the above before seeing your post. You Sir 100% right.


I doubt it sir, if he flops real hard in the soton game all his previous shift will be absolutely trampled on and erased from our minds. I say we bring in szcesney and let vito occupy the bench. Head still high.

Merlin's Panini

I can’t say I browned my pants about Mannone vs Stoke. I would have been more likely to with Fabianski, just because he doesn’t have the same physical presence. Mannone looks like he carries a piece around wherever he goes.


“he carries a piece around wherever he goes”

Is that piece his rather traumatizing nasal structure.




Bigot: One who is strongly partial to one’s own group, religion, race, or politics and is intolerant of those who differ.

I don’t think it went that far.


Well Dan, given the fact that the post was made under the name SCHNOZ, ahhhhh never mind, straight over your head.

Touraine Gooner

Bada Bing !


mannone should not be dropped, if he gets dropped then hes confidence will be wrecked like no matter how good i do i wont be number 1 , he should play tomorrow for sure and then let schezney play in the champs league and if he does well bring back as the number 1


I’m guessing (hoping) that Don Vito knew the situation before coming into the team, i.e. Shez is the de facto number one and it’ll take more than 2 good performances to change that. I’d bring back Shezzer and give Vito games in the cups to keep him sweet, but I suppose most footballers aren’t known for their patience.

Runcorn Gooner

I was always told you play your best players.Chessers is our best goalkeeper.fact.
VM did a good job and there will be other opportunities.Chesser has been injured and could happen again plus he came close to being sent off a couple of times last year plus the various cups.


Inclined to agree. Tricky one though, Chesney is the better goalkeeper (despite his dodgy summer) so Southampton would be a decent warm up before the CL next week. Might be a bit much to drop him in straight into Euro competition, but then he’s super confident and can probably deal with it.

Poor old Fabianski


Chamakh was doing quite well during the injury to our former #10 and as soon as he was fit again he came back in and Chamakh hasn’t really had a good game since.
Not saying the same will happen to Don Vito but…..


I actually like this.

Dr Baptiste

I’d bring Szczesny back only because of the past experiences with Mannone’s confidence. We all remember him against Fulham but then suddenly, he was flapping at things, miskicking and generally looking like a player whose confidence is so fragile that a little mistake brings the walls down.

After some solid performances, I’d put him on the bench and use him in the cups to try to build and prolong that confidence

Cygan's Left Foot

You can remember a bad game 3 years ago, to let you know it was against Westham, and can’t see the two good games he has just played few weeks ago???. I watched some game for the Don playing for Hull last season and he was faultless in difficult pitch and conditions.

Check in Hull forum and ask how did they keep few clean sheets because of him. Yes, Hull are on line too.

Dr Baptiste

Szczseny was on loan at Brentford before stepping up to the first team. They were in League One and he played great but then so did Sanchez Watts and Jay-Emmanuel Thomas. Just because players do well in the lower leagues, doesn’t automatically mean that they can play week in, week out in the PL. Yes I know that Mannone has played 2 great games but then Szczesny didn’t concede a goal in the opening game with Vito was called up due to injury. If Szczesny wasn’t injured, do you really think Mannone would have suddenly been in goal? There was… Read more »

Cygan's Left Foot

*scratchs head* Where did I say he is better than Szcz? I just said give the boy his chance just like we did with Szcz. I remember Flab was our No1 got injured and Szcz came at O.T. and made No 1 his. Mannone now around 25/26 and I think that is where most keepers start showing their bests. All I am saying give him a chance and it is nice to have two/three keepers fighting for a spot (I never thought I would ever say this after the Almunia 3 years nightmare).


As good as competition for places is, there is nothing like having an outstanding ‘keeper who the defence have grown to know inside out. Seaman never needed competition for his place.


Sczczezny isnt outstanding yet though he’ll need someone be it mannone, fabianski or someone else to push towards his absolute best as quickly as possible.


Exactly manone also needs some competition too, i’m hoping it doesn’t get to his head that he’s the automatic no 2 after two good games, there’s also lucas in there somewhere.

Manonne needs to be kept on his nose……..oh sorry his toes.

This competition is really what the goal keeping department needs. Outdo one another and eventually settle for your no.1. Szcesney though has staked in a huge case last season mannone too has started well. We need this!!!.

Rad Carrot

True, but remember our double winning season of 2002? Seaman, Wright and Taylor all won Premier League medals as they’d all played at least 10 PL games. It was down to injuries, of course, but having three keepers who performed well enough to get us two trophies was better than having one great keeper and two underperformers.

Not saying that Wright and Taylor were brilliant, but hey, we won the PL that season, so they can’t have been that shit.

Dr Baptiste

If Wright plays 10 games this season and City win the league, Richard Wright would have won more medals than RvP….. Not that I want City to win the league at all, just thought it was amusing.

Cygan's Left Foot

*scratchs head AGAIN* He already has, we won the double that year!!!!.


Plus I’d really like to give Schz a solid year as #1, he,s clearly talented and just needs more experience and honing of his decision making skills to be a true PL great.

Dick Swiveller

It does look like he has stepped it up a little and having a decent back-up or competition can only be good.

Not so sure that it’d have too much impact on Mannone’s confidence being dropped either, it’s only been two games and I’m sure he’s smart enough to see that it’s a step forward to do well in them but not a case of making himself undroppable, we have a no.1 and he needs to fight every chance he gets to dislodge Szczesny.


Let’s not get carried away. He wasn’t overly tested thanks to a much improved defence. Szczesny is still a far better keeper.



He wasn’t bad, but to say that he was “great” is just wrong.


2 clean sheets? He’s kept 3 clean sheets by my count (Sunderland, Stoke, Liverpool).


Feck. Just realized Chezzers played against Sunderland.




Dick Swiveller

Well, if he managed to grow a few inches and affect a crazy half Polish-half English accent for his game against Sunderland, as a man of many talents he must retain his place.


Brown hair, perfect, slender fugure there’s many things you left out. Dont take a challenge you aren’t willing to see it through to the end!!


fabianski, the greatest proof that Wenger hasn’t a clue what he’s doing. I would keep manone between the sticks just now and give shez some time to reflect.


Oh, I can’t even be bothered

Rad Carrot

I’d play Szcz, no offence to Vito, but he has had a couple of dodgy moments. Play him in the Capital One and use him as No. 2. Southampton have scored against both Shitteh and Salford this season, so we need someone who is confident at the back.

Fabianski, I’d say bump him down to 3rd choice or let him leave. He’s just not good enough.


Fabianski is far more talented than Mannone, and before his injury troubles he put together a run of great performances (Chelsea, City). Mannone is not bad, but his potential is nowhere near Fabianski’s.


Well put, I fully agree


being a Pole here, i’d be perhaps subjective, but i’d give the place back to Wojciech without a single moment’s hesitation. (and, at the same time, i’d loan Fabiański out to, let’s say, Blyth Spartans, so it’s not all about nationality here). we’re all talking about gk’s mental state, and just as Vito needs to be confident, Wojciech needs the same. he had an awful summer, first with injuries and then with a rather unpleasant Euro experience, so he can’t be fully fit and self-confident in the mental department. everyone needs a little belief, and he’s one of our brighest… Read more »


* i’ll perhaps be subjective
** gks’ mental state
*** prospects

feck turbo responding. edit button, please, once again.

Faleye Ebenezer

Yes he has proof himself as one who can do it wit Arsenal, i mean Mannone of course if they give him chance he can proof himself on his own way but not like dat of Sczesny lol. Am sure Sczesny is still the number one keeper as at now.


Its great to have some real competition. apart from the slightly thin selection of strikers, we have the capability to field two really good teams. I wonder if Koscielny will take over from mertersacker tomorrow. I would be inclined to keep the Big Friendly German to deal with Ricky Lambert. Also if Diaby is injured i would like to see the big Coq play the holding role and Arteta slightly further forward, especially as Rambo played both internationals.


I wont have any probs on who plays in goal till we continue to work like a team we have done in the past three games. We all know sczc is the best of the lot be it reflexes or comanding the area he is the best all round keeper we have. As for vito he has done well but again i stress he was well protected in those games.not a criticism but take de gea for example of what i have seen of him he is the new almunia just has great reflexes same what Almunia had. So about… Read more »

Bat Bohi

Did you know that Arsenal have never lost a PL game with Vito in goal? Interesting stat that.


Arsenal has also never lost a game where Podolski or Cazorla scored!

You can make stats out of anything mate. How many games has Vito played for Arsenal over the years? If he’s started 150 matches and we’ve never lost one when he’s started I’ll be impressed.


if he started 15o without a loss, he’d probably be in farcelona right now.


I was just about to point that out!! So when ppl talk about dropping the player it is definitely not based on his current form. I say if a player is performing, why should he be dropped. Reminds me of Senderos coming in and Arsenal going on an eight or so game run. Sol ends up being fit and he is immediately dropped, Arsenal lose!! Even in the champions league it happened!! Manonne goes to Hull and starts off brilliantly not only this season but the season before as well. he finally loses a game when he is rush back… Read more »

Too Drunk To Be Offside

Lets get our facts straight. Mannone has had two clean sheets, fair enough, but isn’t that what he is paid to do, what has he done that is so extraordinary to suddenly deserve to be no. 1. How many world class saves did he pull off in those two games. I remember 1 save from Shelvey and was slightly more than a regulation save, and a 40 yard shot from Daniel Agger. Sure he looked confident and assured so that is a plus, and good that we have two good reserve keepers, but better than Chesney, I mean come on,… Read more »


Very true. He has had a couple of good performances and I hope his confidence is on the up. But you also have to give massive credit for the clean sheets to the back 4 of Jenkinson, Per, TV5 & Gibbs. Bould also deserves credit for the clean sheets.
A team either wins as a team or loses as individuals.


Why say keep Mannone but get rid of Jenkinson? That seems perverse to me, as Jenkinson has been equally solid and, unlike the goalkeeper situation, we don’t have a better player ready to step in – Coquelin is not a RB and is still raw, even in his preferred position.

Merlin's Panini

Absolutely. Enough of the fucking Jenks baiting. He doesn’t deserve it. He’s doing fine, looks a decent young player, and, what’s more, will never want to leave Arsenal unless he’s pushed out.

the only sam is nelson

if your no.1 keeper is fit then you play him – if don vito had been keeping clean sheets for 6-8 games or more then it’d be a selection dilemma

so perhaps this is to try and distract soton from what will be happening a bit further up the pitch


You know why I want szcesney in goal?. It’s coz with him I straight away know he’s polish but tell me about mannone and I’ll think real hard first before I get his nationality. I need someone on goal who is easy on the mind. “good save by tje pole there”.

(As I write this I still dont know where mannone’s from)

the only sam is nelson

Yes, lucky you pointed out where Hamish “Vito” McMannone came from in the piece as it confuses the fuck out of most people when confronted with his baffling name


Yes thats how serious it is blogs.

The pole on the other hand I couldn’t forget even I bumped my head into kardashians ass.


I’d play them both,with don vito on the wing ahead of wallcott!

the only sam is nelson

i’d play all three of them. in goal. that ought to ensure a clean sheet or two.


That’s not parking the bus, that’s the whole damned depot!

gooner from bangladesh



I am not sure you all can call yourselves arsenal fans. I watched vito games when amulnia and fabianski injured back few years ago. His saves were absolutely brilliant. Only right after westham game, he went downhill.


He showed promise early on but let’s face it, prior to the Hull loan spell he looked abysmal. It looks like he’s improved but we as Arsenal fans have every right to be surprised after that incident against Olympiacos!


I do think I have to give pause as Mr Wenger says, but then, as also pointed out, a great deal of work by the entire squad contributes to the clean sheet- the solid back four play, the excellent midfield possession work, and the back tracking of the forward players. I think psychologically speaking, using the CL game as an excuse to start Vito vs Southampton and Szcz vs Montpellier should preserve confidence and reinforce the established pecking order. If the boss doesn’t want to dropSzcz into the CL without work, then clearly you use Southampton as befits both the… Read more »

Red and White Stripey Socks

Put Szcz back in! Vito will get games this season, for me he’s still young and has a lot to learn. I’m sure he understands the pecking order.
Looking forward to the game, a few goals and a clean sheet will be just what the Dr ordered.


Vito has played well for the last 2 games. But Sczc is our number one.
And lets not forget the way the defence has been playing.
You can tell they have been well drilled in the pre season. Its down to them that Vito has had so little to do. So for me its Sczc..


If i was wenger i would let vito play tomorrow then sit all 3 keepers down and tell them they are getting a game each over the next 3.
vito – montpellier
woj – man city
fab – coventry

if fab is not fit till after that then give vito and wojech 2 each of the next 4. but either way play vito tomorrow.

Dial Square

Szcesney should start tomorrow, Vito has done ok but we should ALWAYS play our strongest team, if Vito plays and lets in a soft goal we will be slaughtering Arsene for playing Vito while our number one keeper is sitting on the bench twiddling his thumbs.
Vito Mannone..he plays when he wants…


Mannone did well but he didn’t make any saves that you wouldn’t expect most PL keepers to make. He didn’t do anything to suggest that he’s a better option than szcz, so szcz should start.
It’s nice having a decent backup though. Give him the game against Coventry.

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[…] Wojciech Szczesny is expected to start, despite the manager recently revealing, that there is an interesting situation being created in the goalkeeping department, with the recent good form of Vito Mannone. While […]

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