Aaron Ramsdale has put himself forward to take on captaincy duties at Arsenal from 2022-23, with the confident goalkeeper informing Mikel Arteta that he would “excel” if asked to fill the armband at Emirates Stadium.
The 23-year-old only joined the Gunners from Sheffield United in the summer of 2021 and is yet to complete a full season in north London.
A man that has ousted Bernd Leno from Arsenal’s number one spot, while earning senior international recognition with England, is of the opinion, though, that he is ready to take on a leadership role.
What has been said?
With former skipper Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang departing for Barcelona in January and Alexandre Lacazette heading towards free agency, Ramsdale told FourFourTwo of the battle to become Arsenal’s next captain: “Listen, I’d take the responsibility but that’s down to the manager.
“We’ve got a lot of strong characters, though, and a lot of people who I think would be good captains.
“Just to be told 'you’re in a leadership role' – I’d relish whatever. You never turn down a captaincy and I think I’d excel if I was given the armband, but that’s down to the boss.”
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For now, with a captaincy call yet to be made, Ramsdale is fully focused on ensuring that he retains his starting berth in Arteta’s plans.
He was fast-tracked into the Gunners team following a £24 million ($31m) transfer, with a debut made in a 1-0 Premier League win over Norwich on September 11.
Ramsdale has not looked back from there, helping to keep the Gunners in contention for a top-four finish, but is aware that high standards must be maintained in order to retain a prominent role.
He added on settling in quickly at the Emirates: “With Bernd Leno pushing me every day, I know I can’t sit back and take it easy, because he’ll take the number one spot off me just as quickly as I took it off him.
“He’s been good with me – we fight for the same spot, but we have each other’s backs too. For me, it’s not about what happens months into the first season – I’d prefer to be judged four or five years down the line.
“I thought [that becoming the number one] would be a process of four months, maybe a year, but I was ready. I felt settled straight away, knowing some of the lads, and the manager made it so easy for me by saying, 'Just go and play your game.' Once I’d got in, it was so comfortable for me to do my stuff.
“The fans have been absolutely amazing with me, too. There was obviously a bit of unrest when I signed – people were talking about me being a second-choice goalkeeper, costing a lot of money and the relegations – but that just gave me added motivation to win them over.”
Arsenal will be back in action on April 4 when taking in a short trip to London rivals Crystal Palace.