Nice goalkeeper David Ospina has been on the Arsenal radar since before the World Cup, when the Mirror reported that the Gunners’ talent spotters would use the tournament to size up his gifts.
Arsene Wenger’s German international-studded side are 7/1 to win the Premier League next season, but replacing the departed Lukas Fabianski remains an unticked item on their to-do list.
With just a year left on his deal at Nice, the Colombian international stopper rates a value alternative to Cardiff’s David Marshall.
The Scot, who left Premier League observers in little doubt as to his ability with a string of monumental performances last term, carries a £10m price tag – approximately £7m more than it would cost to obtain Ospina.
At 6ft the Colombian is relatively moderate in stature in a goalkeeping world dominanted by hightowers and beanpoles like Manuel Neuer or Thibaut Courtois.
Yet this didn’t stop him making the top-nine for saves at the World Cup, despite only reaching the quarter finals and playing for a side that had dominated their opposition up until their exit at the hands of Brazil.
Neither did it stop him making more successful claims of the ball than any stopper at the shindig bar Barcelona-bound Claudio Bravo of Chile.
He defied the opposition 3.39 times for every goal conceded in Brazil, a continuation of his fine form for Nice last term.
Ospina kept an impressive 12 clean sheets in 28 games for the Yachting haven side – not bad going for employers who escaped relegation by a slender two-point margin.
If the 25-year-old has a weakness it’s that he is no sweeper-keeper just yet.
He has been caught out in coming off his line on numerous occasions for Les Aiglons during his five years on the coast, such as when sent off for bringing down Ezequiel Lavezzi against PSG last year.