Arsenal to raid Aston Villa for Martinez replacement after Runarsson struggles

Arsenal are reportedly looking at signing Aston Villa outcast Tom Heaton to become their new back-up goalkeeper.

The Gunners signed Alex Runarsson as a replacement for Emiliano Martinez in the summer though the Icelandic shot-stopper has struggled when chosen.

He found life difficult during the League Cup loss to Manchester City with Mikel Arteta now reportedly willing to let Runarsson go out on loan.

But it means Bernd Leno will need a new back-up with Brentford goalie David Raya previously targeted by the Gunners.

Though the Daily Mail claim Aston Villa outcast Heaton could make the move to the Emirates as a short-term solution.

Heaton lost his place under Dean Smith a year ago having suffered a serious knee injury.

Arteta has said: “We are assessing what is going to happen with the three goalkeeping positions.

“The discussions we had in the summer turned out to be different to what actually happened because of the transfer window and the situation that developed with Emi Martinez.

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“We didn’t have much time to do what we really wanted so we decided to assess the situation again in this window.

“There is no decision yet with Alex Runarsson so we must decide how we want to move forward in these positions.”

Runarsson previously backed himself to take over Bernd Leno’s No. 1 spot at Arsenal.

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The summer signing had said: “It doesn’t matter what position you play. I think maybe as a goalkeeper it is a little bit different, but you definitely have to have the mentality that you want to push to become No. 1.

“If it happens or not, if it happens in one week, one month or one year, that always has to be your mentality – because otherwise you’re in the wrong profession I think.

“I have to have this mentality that I can play and I have to believe it and show it.”

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