Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Confirmed: Arsenal complete signing of David Raya

Arsenal have confirmed the permanent signing of David Raya from Brentford in a deal reported to be worth £27 million.

The Gunners committed to the transfer last August but requested the arrangement start with a season-long loan deal as they weren’t sure they could comply with the Premier League’s profit and sustainability rules after big spending on Declan Rice, Kai Havertz and Jurrien Timber.

When Raya arrived, it wasn’t initially clear how Arteta planned to use the Spain international given Aaron Ramsdale’s status as Arsenal’s first-choice goalkeeper. While the manager was bullish about his need to increase competition between the sticks, he muddied the waters with a series of unconvincing statements that hinted at a willingness to substitute keepers depending on the game state.

In the end, things were much simpler than that. After the first international break of the season, Raya took over from Ramsdale and subsequently played 41 games in all competitions. Rotation was limited to two league games against parent club Brentford, a further encounter with the Bees in the Carabao Cup third round and a defeat to West Ham in the fourth round.

In total, Raya kept 20 clean sheets and marked his debut season in the Champions League with penalty shootout heroics against Porto that helped Arsenal qualify for the quarter-finals. Aside from falling agonisingly short in the quest to usurp Manchester City as Premier League champions, things couldn’t have gone much better for Raya.

While Ramsdale still has his fans on the terraces, objections to Raya dissipated quickly and he’ll definitely start the 24/25 campaign as the club’s undisputed number 1. His calm demeanor is particularly noteworthy while his cross-catching and pass completion numbers also justify Arteta’s faith in him.

Unsurprisingly, Arsenal will allow Ramsdale to leave in some capacity and there’s a chance third-choice stopper Karl Hein could also depart on loan. With Arthur Okonkwo and James Hillson also released, Arteta and Edu could find they need to sign at least two more stoppers in the coming months to make up the numbers.

Speaking about the decision to retain Raya and his impact on the team, manager Mikel Arteta said: “David showed us last season what an important player he is for us, so we are delighted he is now officially our player. He is a big presence in our dressing room and we are really pleased to keep working with him.

“We know he will take the strong foundations he put in place last season and build on them in the years to come, and that he will enjoy more success with us. We have a very talented group of goalkeepers and I love to see connections like the one I see in our goalkeeping unit.”

Sporting Director Edu added: “We are so happy to have completed the deal to sign David from Brentford. He had a beautiful first season with us, winning the Premier League Golden Glove. He is a talented international, a great professional and a popular figure at the club. We benefited from all of this last season during his loan with us.”

Raya is currently at the European Championships in Germany.

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Nacho de Montreal is tasty

Wasn’t convinced when he came but considering the season we had, I just have to accept that he is a top-quality GK.

Johnny 4 Hats

I don’t think he’s better or worse than Ramsdale, just different.

Aaron is high octane, passionate and explosive. He suited our game when we needed identity and to win over the crowd.

But this next evolution is more about control and calm. And David is a perfect goalkeeper for this.

I still think there’s another level when it comes to our guy between the sticks. But for now Raya is more than enough for us to push for the title.

Funsho Patrick

Ramsdale is also the better shot stopper…Raya may just nick it due to temperament but there’s no knowing what a better defence in front of Ramsdale last season could have also produced… Ramsdale may also have the higher ceiling…

Johnny 4 Hats

Who needs a shot stopper when you’ve got Billy Saliba?

Greg in Seattle

This is debatable. The metrics don’t actually support that he’s anything notable as a shot stopper, though he certainly has had some memorable ones.


Anyway welcome to the club (permanently) David Raya. Let’s see if we can get 40/50m for Ramsdale off the nation rich clubs. Sad but for the best.


Actually the exact opposite of LANS, a technically new signing who actually is more Like An Old Signing


I’ve got your hat and coat for you sir…


Appreciate it. As I’ve said, there’s no football atm, this is what happens 🤷

Declan Fried Rice with Egg



Like Old Albeit New Singing – LOANS?


Holy shit, that’s a bolt from the blue! I know Arsenal like to keep things quiet, but thats some next level secret keeping.

The Beast


The Beast

Or is he the anti-LANS


LAOS? Not the country obviously. Like An Old Signing.


Like A Duh Signing

In that “duh, we all know that”.



Guess I wasn’t original in this take I just posted above. So here’s original for you – why NOT the entire country of Laos? Stack all of it in goal and I’m sure it’ll do better than Raya in stopping opposition shots. Our goal would be completely impenetrable. Now, will an entire south east asian country be as good on the ball as Raya, you ask? Probably not. So there’s your answer to “why not the whole of Laos”. But it was worth exploring.

karl g

It’s hard to judge quickly how good an Arsenal keeper is because our defence is at such a level. If pushed, I’d say Ramsdale is a better shot stopper, but Raya in overall play wins out.

Johnny puts it well in saying there is still another level to come.

Michael Robert Roberts

Not going to pass any judgement until I see him play


It’s a shame that Arteta didn’t manage to find a solution that kept both keepers happy. Bit of a worrying lack of depth assuming Ramsdale departs.

Dr. Gooner

I don’t think it was ever the plan to keep them both happy. Raya became available and that was that. Tough for Aaron but this kind of thing happens all the time in lots of positions. Happened to Leno when Ramsdale came in.

Greg in Seattle

This gets forgotten rather frequently. The only difference is that Leno wasn’t a fan favorite. Leno had the bad luck of playing behind the likes of Sokratis and Holding and Mari and a fading Bellerin, so Ramsdale also got the benefit when the defense got some upgrades like White, Gabriel, and Tierney.


I really feel like Arteta originally did intend to do as he stated, to actually rotate them to some extent and maybe even substitute one for the other during the course of a match for tactical reasons. Otherwise why would he have said that? It certainly didn’t help with fan expectations. So I think that was his original intention, but probably wiser people (perhaps his assistants, or perhaps even mentors like Wenger or Pep) got in his ear and convinced him that that would be a bad idea, that a defence needs to gel with its keeper, they need to… Read more »

Dr. Gooner

Good points! Except I don’t think he’s the type to do anything without much forethought.


I dont think having forethought means you can’t reconsider things later when there is further input and data to consider.


Plus that would be suggesting he’s a dishonest person, which i don’t think he is.


Sorry, but I’m still not convinced with Raya. Not much of an upgrade on Ramsdale and prone to making big errors in big games. If a top-quality goalkeeper becomes available then I hope that Arteta moves in and gets him.

BTW: Where’s that top-quality striker that we desperately need?

NZ Gooner

unpopular opinion- Ramsdale is a better keeper and Arteta has dropped the ball on this one.

Greg in Seattle

I don’t think it’s unpopular so much as not backed by metrics, results, or the eye test.


Stop Genocide




Raya journey to be the number one to play for an elite Premier side playing in the Champions league and representing in his country colours in Europe championships is remarkable, having left his country at an early age to for Blackburn then Brentford, then having to replace fans favourite stopper with every game being scrutinised for every mistake he’s had a hell of a season, 20 clean sheets and a PLGG award, he deserves a lot of credit as does Miki for his decision


What Arteta did to replace AR with Raya was correct. If City was only 95% as good, we would have won the title.

Lots of people here said when Raya came that they would judge it at the end of season. I think our season has been great. We didn’t win the title is because City was too good from Jan to May and we didn’t concede the title. So by that standard, Raya has been successful.

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