The Answer For Arsenal?
Cagliari have announced that Federico Marchetti is up for sale. Based on what we saw of him in the World Cup, you could be forgiven for thinking it’s likely to start a stampede of precisely zero.
With Buffon injured, Marchetti was asked to deputise and although few goalkeepers could fill Gigi’s shoes, he was particularly inadequate. His indecision and cowardice against New Zealand allowed Shane Smeltz to score a famous goal for the All Whites, whilst against Slovakia he did little to help when his team were falling apart at the seams.
Arsenal are reportedly interested, but on the evidence of South Africa, it would be a step sideways on Almunia and in time could prove to be a step backwards – depending on how Marchetti adapts to life in England and the style of the Premier League.
However Marchetti’s career didn’t start at the World Cup and it certainly didn’t end there so he must have been doing something right to get himself into the squad. His reputation clearly hasn’t been hindered by Buffon to identifying him as his long term successor for the Azzurri, but the underlying problem in signing goalkeepers from lower profile clubs is how they’ll manage the huge step up in scrutiny. All of a sudden a goalkeeper will go from being seen mainly on the brief highlights reel of a country’s equivalent of Match Of The Day to being broadcast twice a week and having virtually everything he does analysed in immense detail. There’ll be a lot more eyes on him if he was to join Arsenal and most of those eyes will be connected to mouths not afraid to express opinions.
Arsene’s generally excellent record in the transfer market hasn’t always resulted in the Gunners landing the most reliable of goalkeepers. The best advice may be to steer clear for the time being.