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The Wenger era: Goalkeeper

Welcome to WTTGT’s new blog: The Wenger era.

Over the course of these posts, we’ll take a look at the best players to have graced the red and white of Arsenal since the Professor arrived at Highbury back in September 1996.

By the end of the blog, we’ll have formed the best Wenger XI as voted for by YOU.

Today we take a look at goalkeepers, and you have three of the best shot stoppers from Wenger’s time at the club to choose from.

Happy voting!

David Seaman

A contender for the best Gunners goalkeeper ever, never mind just the Wenger era.

He played over 400 times for Arsenal, won 15 trophies during his time, and also shined on the international stage with England.

Seaman arrived at Highbury from Queens Park Rangers in 1990 and spent 13 years with the club, seven of these under Wenger.

At the start of his Arsenal tenure, Le Boss was known for getting as many years out of the more experienced players as he could, with Seaman being one of these men.

He was unchallenged as the Gunners number one for the whole of his working relationship with Wenger and continued to pull off outstanding saves even as he approached the end of his career.

He won two doubles, another FA Cup as well as reaching the UEFA Cup final in 2000.

The man was nicknamed ‘Safe Hands’ for a reason, but is it enough to get your vote?

Jens Lehmann

Just thinking of ‘Mad Jens’ brings a smile to the faces of many Gooners.

At times he may have been frustrating, mostly fantastic but always chaotic.

There was never a dull moment when Lehmann was around, having been brought in to replace Seaman from Borussia Dortmund in 2003 and got off to a dream start.

He was an ever-present for his first season with Arsenal, as they went on to record an unbeaten Premier League campaign, with Lehmann more than playing his part along the way.

Arguably his best year between the sticks came in the last season at Highbury, where Lehamm pulled off some key stops, in particular from Real Madrid’s Raul, on the way to the Champions League final. The less said about the final, the better…

However, He also holds the Champions League record for the most consecutive clean sheets, having not conceded a goal in 10 matches during that campaign.

After leaving in 2008, Lehmann returned to the Gunners to help Wenger out, as the club were going through a bad patch with injuries.

Brought in as backup, Lehmann actually ended up playing the whole match when Arsenal beat Blackpool 3-1 in April 2011 and was hailed by the Gooner faithful for the full 90 minutes.

A true great.

Wojciech Szczesny

He may only be 22-years-old and still have years ahead of him, but Wojciech Szczesny certainly looks like he is on his way to being one of the great Arsenal goalkeepers.

Having returned from a loan spell at League One club Brentford Town in 2009, the Polish keeper made his Premier League first team debut for the Gunners against Manchester United at Old Trafford in 2010. It was clear from this point onwards that Szczesny would be a hit.

He oozes the confidence that is essential to any good goalkeeper, he epitomises passion and is also damn good on the field.

He is already Poland’s first-choice keeper, which speaks volumes about his talent.

Last year was his first full campaign with Arsenal and he didn’t disappoint as he cemented his place as Gunners number one.

He was one of the stars of the season and had the game of his life, as he helped Arsenal earn a crucial 2-1 victory at Liverpool at the business end of the season.

Szczesny says that he wants to be Arsenal’s top keeper for the next 15 years, and you’d be foolish to bet against him.

Who has been the best GOALKEEPER during Arsene Wenger’s reign at Arsenal?
  
pollcode.com free polls 

Matt Cotton

@FindingCotton

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