Arsene Wenger had to deal with unrest from current goalkeeper Wojciech Szczęsny this season, and it looks like the manager’s possible target – Sunderland’s Simon Mignolet has indicated that he is positive about proceedings at the Stadium of Light
Mignolet has been recognized due to some fantastic performances over the season. Despite Sunderland finishing in 17th place, missing relegation by a whisker, Mignolet has been a target for the elite clubs as a stable experienced shot-stopper.
Szczęsny had a decent season but faded after Christmas and was dropped to be replaced by the reserve keeper, Fabianski initially. The Polish international keeper played just 25 matches, and the 13 remaining were divided between Vito Mannone and Lukasz Fabianski after the latters injury. Szczęsny has been Arsenal’s number one for a couple of seasons, and did not shy away from revealing his frustration to the media about being benched more than once.
The 23-year old was seen as Arsenal’s long term goalkeeper, but this season’s poor form has not gone down well with the supporters, as the club almost missed the cut for the UEFA Champions League qualification.
Mignolet has made a total of 90 appearances for Sunderland ever since transferring from Belgian second division side – Sint-Truiden, where he famously scored a goal after fans and team-mates insisting on him taking a penalty after a hefty lead.
According to the Metro, Mignolet has admitted his disappointment at the poor season at Sunderland. However, he has also revealed the effect of the new manager coming into the club. Paulo Di Canio was brought into the club after the sacking of Martin O’Neill. The club were struggling for survival, and Di Canio lifted them from the shadows and brought positive football to fans, which was appreciated. The famous 0-3 win in the Tyne-Wear derby against arch rivals Newcastle United remains the highlight of the season.
Mignolet said, “As a footballer, you want to do well and want to win games and finish higher in the table than 17th. On that point, it was a disappointing season.”
“But then again, there’s a reason for that and hopefully next year we can do a lot better.”
“Of course, when a new manager comes in, there’s new things around and since he’s come in, all the games we’ve played – apart from the Aston Villa game – there were positives. So that’s good for the future.”
“During the season, you don’t really think about how things are going because you still have a lot to fight for, even if that’s avoiding relegation.”
“But now the season is over, you can make a judgement on how well we’ve played and how bad we’ve played.”
“Now is a time to look back over the season and for everyone to look in the mirror to see what they can do better for next season.”
So it seems another keeper is out of the running for a possible move to Arsenal, maybe the Gunners should just stick with what they in goal?