The Colombian almost single handedly earned a vital point for Arsenal as he made a string of fabulous saves in their Champions League Group A opener against Paris Saint-Germain.
Arsene Wenger has heaped praise on second-choice goalkeeper David Ospina and has confirmed that the 28-year-old will be Arsenal’s first-choice keeper in the Champions League. This move backfired spectacularly last season as Ospina’s blunders contributed to defeats against both Dinamo Zagreb and Olympiakos.
Wenger then dropped the Colombian for the rest of the group phase and gave match time to the more experienced Petr Cech. However, the Frenchman revealed that there was a new agreement for this season and that it would be impossible to keep both men at the club without some rotation.
Ospina made a number of fine saves from PSG striker Edinson Cavani’s efforts, and Wenger believes he has done enough to continue in the starting lineup for European matches. The Frenchman also suggested, however, that this is part of an agreement he has with his keepers in a bid to keep what he describes as two ‘world class’ players happy.
Wenger was quoted by the Guardian as saying: “David Ospina did play very well. Tonight he showed his detractors that he is a very good goalkeeper, those who doubted him. Last year he made a mistake in the Champions League and everyone jumped all over him.
“I have two world-class goalkeepers. I can give them both games. If they do not play, you can’t keep two world-class goalkeepers. We have a rule that the keepers know (when they will play). On what he delivered tonight, he has the right to stay in the team for the next Champions League game.”
As such, Ospina is likely to play further Champions League matches and could be between the sticks for the domestic cup competitions as well. However, it would be interesting to see if Wenger sticks to his policy in future, particularly in the latter stages of the Champions League. Petr Cech is a world class goalkeeper and given his experience and ability, the Chelsea legend should not be overlooked for a crucial game, regardless of the competition.