Arsenal Transfer Rumors: Jack Butland Would Be Perfect Addition for Gunners

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistJanuary 8, 2013

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 17: Jack Butland of Birmingham in action during the npower Championship match between Birmingham City and Hull City at St. Andrews on November 17, 2012 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Ben Hoskins/Getty Images)
Ben Hoskins/Getty Images

For Arsenal, there is a move out there on the transfer market that isn't being talked about a whole lot for a player that is being more heavily linked to other teams, but would make perfect sense for the Gunners.

I'm talking, of course, about 19-year-old goalkeeper Jack Butland, sure to be lured away from Birmingham City. As The Daily Mail reports, Arsenal is just one of many teams to be making googly eyes at Butland:

Sportsmail reported on Saturday that Southampton had been the first top-flight team to inquire about the youngster, and City, Spurs and Arsenal have since been on alert.

Butland, who is contracted to cash-strapped Birmingham City, played much of last season on loan at League Two side Cheltenham.

It's no secret that Arsenal could use another keeper to put some pressure on first-team choice Wojciech Szczęsny.

In Butland, Arsenal would not only get a player that will likely be Joe Hart's eventual replacement on England's national team and the Gunners' future keeper, but is also young enough that they could keep him on the bench initially.

What would be the point in that?

Well, given his talent level he would be good enough to push Szczęsny and hopefully improve the incumbent's play, but is young enough that he wouldn't cause a major stir if he didn't play each match.

It would be a far better setup than the odd pairing a team like Tottenham has in Hugo Lloris and Brad Friedel, two keepers that absolutely should be playing.

He's an exciting prospect, because many clubs believe he can play regularly at the top level if called upon to do so. John Cross of the Mirror offered the following reason why:

Butland has huge potential and has already made his mark with Birmingham, England's senior squad, the under-21s and got his chance as the first choice for Team GB in the Olympics last summer.

No-one can say that Butland has not had to deal with pressure and expectation from an early age and that is why—together with his talent—the big clubs are having a good look.

He also brings ideal size—he's 6'5" and has a solid build—has big hands, and has shown a knack for stopping penalty kicks. Sounds good, right?

Arsenal's rumored interest in David Villa and Adrian Lopez will garner more attention, but I think landing Butland could be a sneaky and savvy move by the Gunners should they move in that direction. 

Though I'm sure Szczęsny would disagree.


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