Despite not being particularly impressive while on loan at Plymouth Argyle last season, Matt Macey appears to have won the battle to be Arsenal’s third-choice goalkeeper for the forthcoming campaign.
The 24-year-old has travelled with Unai Emery’s squad for their pre-season tour of the United States at the expense of Deyan Iliev, who is set to go out on loan.
Macey previously featured for the Arsenal first-team in the 2017/18 season but has had to be very patient for opportunities since joining the Gunners in 2013 following his departure from Bristol Rovers.
Tall and possessing good distribution skills, Macey endured some difficult moments at Plymouth as he lost his place in the starting lineup and was often caught out when he did feature.
There were some suggestions that Arthur Okonkwo could be promoted, but the 17-year-old is rather inexperienced in comparison to Macey.
Macey, who has also previously had loan spells with Accrington Stanley and Luton Town, will train regularly with Bernd Leno and Emiliano Martinez, although it remains to be seen how much playing time he will receive.
With Martinez likely to feature in the Europa League, it seems that the Carabao Cup represents Macey’s best chance of featuring for the first-team.
At various stages during the last few years it has appeared that Macey’s time at Arsenal could be about to come to an end.
However, he now looks to set to receive an extended stay, and his status as a homegrown player is useful for the club.
There is still a possibility that Macey could be sent out on loan in the second half of the season with a recall option, but for now it seems that he will be part of the first-team squad.
Jeorge Bird is the author of www.arsenalyouth.wordpress.com Follow him on Twitter @jeorgebird
Keep the Kids coming! Hopefully we can groom more of our academy into starting XI.
Is Martinez the 2nd choice for sure now??
Encouraging. Let’s hope we don’t get any injuries on this department.
Macey: Be 24 + Go on loan to league two side + be terrible, with highlight conceded goals and get dropped by the manager = Promotion to arsenal first team in a position not really lacking in options.
Bielik: Be 21 + Go on loan to a league one side + have one of the best loan experiences cultivating in a MoTM performance in the play off finals = Allegedly (we’ll see how true this is) being told not needed next season, in a squad lacking defensive options.
Macey obviously wants to play for us and it’s not definite that Bielik does. I agree that Macey would not be my option for 3rd place goalie because he conceded 66 goals whilst on loan, but he counts as home grown and our quota went down when we lost Rambo and Welbz and rightly or wrongly we have to top it back up somehow. If we don’t get Tierney don’t be surprised if Jenko stays at the club for the very same reason.
Bielik himself said he wants to play for us, just not at u23, which is even more fair considering players who have done less than he has are getting promotion.
And ofcourse Macey wants to play for us. We are literally the best he can ever do. We are his best option.
So its Martinez and Macey.
Should be decent with both of them pushing each other for the second shirt, Iliev out of the race.
Considering the areas we need to give priority to and the limited budget on hand, keeper and left back can wait another season down.That would be the sensible thing.
For this season, Martinez AND Macey get a chance to seal a permanent spot.
I think Emi could actually challenge Leno, but we’ll see. I live in Reading and had family and friends who support the club practically in tears at the thought of Emi returning to us…He made some amazing saves to help Reading avoid relegation.
If we want to play 4 at the back (which we would have to with the number of playable CBs we have), a new LB is a must.
Otherwise brace for the regular punts over Kolasinac’s head that will always find an opposition winger and make our CBs weak in the knees.
Good luck to him.
These moves make sense given our budget. We can also make a decision on Martinez and Macey if they get game time. I don’t see the point of letting players rot on the bench. If they want to be professional footballers, they should take a step down to play every week.