With over a week gone since the transfer window closed, surely Arsene Wenger has to be regretting not buying a competent Keeper capable of consistency. Whilst Almunia has shown improvement in his game since he joined the gunners in 2004, it has to be said he is still not good enough to play for a top 4 Premiership side.
Arsenal fans have been blessed in the past with World Class keepers from Bob Wilson to Pat Jennings to David Seaman. Even Jens Lehmann was a keeper who showed class (at times) with his agility and commanding presence but it has to be said Almunia has let down Arsenal fans for too long now and has to be replaced if Wenger wants to mount a serious challenge for the Premiership title.
There may be a few Gunner's fans out there that like having Almunia between the sticks and believe he is capable of bringing quality to the Arsenal side but these fans are far and few between. Almunia is a good shot stopper but then so are most keepers at Blue Square level and higher, this is a given for any keeper. However, his ability to come and catch crosses is less than impressive. Many times have i witnessed at the Emirates first hand just how suspect Almunia is when the ball is lofted or crossed into the Arsenal box.
This can effect Arsenal and drain confidence from their back line. Almunia's lack of ability in commanding his 6 yard box is frustrating to say the least....well, not if you're Rory Delap who must excitedly do thousands of wind mill stretches through the night as preparation for those awkward missile throws before taking on Arsenal and generally finding success through hitting Ricardo Fullers head.
The transfer window has closed, and does not open until January, until then Arsenal have to make do with what they have, unfortunately what they have is not good enough and I'm sure Almunia will cost Arsenal between 10 and 15 points in this Premiership campaign such is the importance of keepers. What happened with Wengers pursuit of Mark Schwarzer? Were Fulham really that reluctant to let their number 1 leave for a good price or did Wenger not push the deal as much as he could due to a growing confidence in Almunia, which i cannot see.
Shay Given publicly stated he did not want to sit on the bench at Eastlands if Joe Hart was made Mancini's number 1, well, here we are, hes on the bench and Alumina is Arsenal's number 1. What a shame.