Alex Runarsson says game time is helping him build his confidence at Arsenal as he gets used to his new surroundings and teammates.
The 25-year-old kept a second consecutive clean sheet last night as the Gunners coasted to a 3-0 win against Molde to secure a place in the knockout stages of the Europa League.
Having been out of favour at French minnows Dijon not so long ago, you get the feeling Runarsson, whose recruitment was driven by keeper coach Inaki Cana Pavon, is finding the whole experience of playing for a massive club somewhat surreal. As you can imagine, he’s enjoying it.
After the win in Norway, he said: “I’m very happy. Playing away in Europe is always difficult, playing on an artificial pitch that we’re not used to…we did what we had to do. I’m very happy to go home with three points and a clean sheet.
“It’s good for my confidence to get minutes in with a new team, I’m learning to play…maybe not learning to play a different style of football, but I’m getting used to playing with the players I’m playing.
“To get a good game against a good opposition, to keep a clean sheet and win, it’s only good for my confidence and good for my overall improvement.”
The son of a professional goalkeeper – dad Runar Kristinsson was capped more than 100 times by Iceland – Alex was also quizzed as to whether his father was proud of his achievements and if he’d been passing on any advice.
“He’s always proud of me, what I do on the pitch and off the pitch,” he reflected.
“I try not to speak to him too much before games about football because he’s my father and I want him to be my father not my coach.
“I have so many other people that are working around Arsenal and my agent and other people I can go to for football [advice].
“My father is my father and we try not to speak too much about things unless I ask him his opinion. We’ve got a very good relationship.”