A look at Bernd Leno, Arsenal's new goalkeeper
Following the departure of legendary manager Arsene Wenger and the arrival of new manager Unai Emery, one of the areas identified as needing strengthening was the goalkeeping position.
With the Bundesliga knowledge of chief scout Sven Mislintat, Bayer Leverkusen goalie Bernd Leno was identified as the ideal candidate and was signed by the yesterday club on a reported five-year-deal for a reported €22m. The German international has arrived at Arsenal after having 7 successful seasons with the Bundesliga club.
After joining Leverkusen from VfB Stuttgart II in 2010 (initially on loan) before the move was made permanent a few months later, he went on to play over 300 games for the Bundesliga side.
He stands at 1.9m tall and last season, he made 30 appearances in the Bundesliga, keeping 9 clean sheets with a pass accuracy of 68%.
He also holds the record for saving 9 penalties in the Bundesliga, no other active goalkeeper has saved more than him. Since the start of the 2014/15 season, only Manuel Neuer (56) has kept more clean sheets than Leno's 45 in the Bundesliga.
He will be Gunner's second signing after the London side were able to sign veteran right-back Stephan Lichtsteiner. The Bundesliga club has confirmed the deal on Tuesday evening. and he is expected to challenge Petr Cech for a starting berth next season.
The Czech veteran, who turned 36 last month could be tempted to leave the club in quest of one last payday though it seems that Colombian goalie David Ospina will be the one to make way for the German g.
Arsenal boss Emery was quoted as saying:
‘We are very pleased that Bernd Leno will be joining us. Bernd is a goalkeeper of high quality and experience. ‘He has been a top performer and regular number one goalkeeper with Leverkusen in the Bundesliga for the past seven years. ‘We are all excited that Bernd has chosen Arsenal Football Club and look forward to start working with him in pre-season.’
Having found himself outside the Germany set-up and dropped from the DieMannschaft side currently at the World Cup, Leno would be fired up to give his best for the Gunners in order to get himself back into Joachim Low's thinking.