Arsenal are preparing a bid in the region of £28 million for Sheffield United goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale, the Sheffield Star revealed this morning.
The Blades had reportedly set the bar at £40 million for the 23-year-old, but the player’s desire for a move back to the Premier League seems to have shifted the goalposts a touch, with the North Londoners confident they will land Ramsdale’s signature with their next bid.
It will be interesting to see if he is involved in the Blades’ trip to face West Bromwich Albion on Wednesday evening, though Slavisa Jokanovic has been clear that there is a strong understanding of the situation between the new manager and his glovesman.
Despite the speculation over his future, Ramsdale has played every minute of their Championship campaign so far, keeping a clean sheet at Swansea City last time out. Dutchman Michael Verrips is Jokanovic’s immediate alternative to Ramsdale, he also achieved a shutout in the club’s League Cup first round tie with Carlisle United.
£28 million would be a huge boost to the Blades’ late window transfer dealings and would also yield an impressive net profit after buying Ramsdale from Bournemouth in the summer of 2020.
It remains to be seen if the 23-year-old has the ability to compete with Bernd Leno for the number one spot with the Gunners, who do not have any European football commitments this season, the deal would represent excellent business and transfer strategy from Sheffield United.
Arsenal must have seen something in Ramsdale in the last two years, when he was relegated with Bournemouth and Sheffield United, because to shell out close to £30 million on a backup goalkeeper is absurd.
They lost Emiliano Martinez to Aston Villa last summer and had Maty Ryan on loan from Brighton and Hove Albion in the second half of 2020/21, so Ramsdale would at least provide a longer term competitor between the sticks but with Leno still just 29, a lot younger in relative terms for a goalkeeper, and with two years remaining on his current deal, game time will be few and far between for Ramsdale.
However the upgrade in his pay packet may soften that blow.