EXCLUSIVE: Arsenal eye Espanyol goalkeeper as Ramsdale replacement

Steve Kay
Steve Kay
  • 4 Jul 2024 06:00 CDT
  • 6 min read
Aaron Ramsdale, Arsenal, 2023/24

Arsenal have made Espanyol’s Joan Garcia a top target should Aaron Ramsdale depart this transfer window, FootballTransfers has been told.

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The 23-year-old has a €25 million release clause in his deal and the Gunners hierarchy are considering him to come in and compete with David Raya should Ramsdale leave.

Sources close to the player have informed us that the England international remains indecisive about his future at the Emirates and he is still weighing up his options carefully.

READ MORE: Arsenal give Man Utd a transfer lesson with Calafiori

In turn, Mikel Arteta needs an answer from Ramsdale within the next week on whether he intends to stay at the club or leave, so he can plan his recruitment for this window.

Ramsdale joined Arsenal from Sheffield United in 2021 for €28m, and he quickly established himself as a key figure between the posts for the North London side.

Joan Garcia of Espanyol
© IMAGO - Joan Garcia of Espanyol

But then the England international found himself in a goalkeeping dilemma with the arrival of David Raya from Brentford, challenging Aaron Ramsdale for the starting spot.

Unfortunately for Ramsdale earlier last season, Raya's consistent performances and ability to play out from the back impressed manager Arteta. This led to Raya being preferred in key matches, eventually pushing Ramsdale to a backup role.

READ MORE: Premier League summer transfers 2024: All the Done Deals

Arsenal are keen to retain their top players to maintain momentum under manager Mikel Arteta, this includes keeping the Yorkshireman for the start of next season - but Arteta needs an answer soon about where his future lies.

Who is Joan Garcia

Garcia spent his youth at CF Damm and CE Manresa before joining Espanyol in 2016 as part of their academy. The shot-stopped made his first La Liga appearance came in January 2022 but still struggled to find game-time. It took until March of this year for the youngster to properly break into the first-team and become a regular starter for the Spanish outfit.

Garcia made seven clean sheets from 13 games as Espanyol achieved promotion through the play-offs, following a 2-1 aggregate victory over Real Oviedo.

The keeper was recently linked to Real Madrid and Liverpool, but on record he has claimed to be happy where he is. “I have always felt the love of the fans,” Garcia said recently. “Very happy that people are with me.

“And for that part (transfers), don’t worry, I’m very good here and above all I would ask you to be calm and encourage us.”

Garcia, who is in Spain's 2024 Olympics squad, has an Estimated Transfer Value of €0.5m, while his contract runs out at Estadi Cornella-El Prat in June 2028.

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