Arsenal need to prioritise signing a replacement for ageing Petr Cech

The sense that a parting of the ways may be the best way forward for both parties can also be sensed in the way Cech is being used. At a club like Arsenal, being the cup keeper is arguably the bigger prize than being the league keeper. nike nfl jersey cheap Forgetting, for a second, the greater prestige attached to the lustily-hyped Premier League, the league campaign is effectively doomed from the start. A club with Arsenal’s structural faults is just not equipped to win it; for this season and last season, they have not even been equipped to win a place in the top four.

Which means, despite his inferior squad status, reputation and pay, David Ospina has had the honour of performing on the biggest occasions: the Carabao Cup final last month and the FA Cup final win over Chelsea last season, as well as, presumably, the latter stages of the Europa League up to and including the final in Lyon if Arsenal make it.

Quite understandably it is a situation which appears to have irked Cech. Speaking as part of the BBC coverage for the FA Cup match between Leicester and his former club, Chelsea, on Sunday, he said: “I love this competition — to play FA Cup games makes it a bit more spicy and special. But you have to respect the manager. You can tell him you would prefer the other way, but the decision is his.”

If Wenger’s intention is to provide playing opportunities for both his goalkeepers, then it would be easy to achieve that while reflecting the changed priorities in Arsenal’s season by simply making Cech the keeper for Europe and starting to use Ospina in the league instead.

It is hardly a ridiculous notion given that the Europa League is not only the only chance of silverware, and pride — it is also the only realistic route back to the Champions League, making it a financial imperative as well as a sporting one. For all intents and purposes, the Europa League *is* the league, as far as Arsenal should be concerned.

And yet it was Ospina who lined up for both legs of the last-16 win over AC Milan. And Ospina is heavily expected to keep the gloves for the matchup with CSKA Moscow in the quarterfinals. Wenger is being consistent, cheap nfl jerseys china nike but it is also a revealing strategy: if all your hopes rest on one competition you aren’t going to leave out a player capable of making a huge difference. And Arsenal do not have a keeper with that ability, which is why you can expect the transfer talk to get a bit louder as the season winds down.