Wojciech Szczesny is close to rejoining Serie A side Roma this summer after a successful season on loan that saw him manage 42 appearances. However there are suggestions a permanent option will be included in the contract, potentially ending his 10-year spell at Arsenal, according to reports in Italy (via Daily Star).
Arsenal now have Petr Cech at the helm after capturing him from Chelsea last season, that has since seen the retired Czech international become first choice with David Ospina remaining at the club to be the veteran’s understudy.
According to the report, who reference Italian newspaper Il Tempo as the source, Arsenal and Roma have struck a deal to split Szczesny’s £2.5m-per-season salary while the Gunners look set to land approximately £800,000 as a loan fee. The biggest piece of news however is suggestions a £12.5m (€15m) purchase option has been inserted – does this mean we’ve seen the last of Szczesny in north London?
The goalkeeper infamously was caught smoking in the showers after the New Years Day loss to Southampton in 2015, which seemed like the last straw for Arsene Wenger after a challenging time trying to discipline the extrovert and over-confident youngster. He was consequently dropped for Ospina.
The Poland international returned to the fray for the FA Cup final against Aston Villa, helping the Gunners to lift the trophy for the second consecutive season, however Cech’s arrival that summer promptly pushed him out the door on a loan spell to help get his career back on track.
Szczesny became first choice again for Poland for the Euro 2016 finals however injury ruled him out for the remainder of the tournament, a goalkeeper with massive potential and still a number of years ahead of him to improve – question marks still remain over his ability to curb his over-enthusiasm.
To see him leave at the end of this season will be a shame considering the investment Arsenal have made in developing him since the age of 16 and his clear love for the Gunners cause. But if Wenger is not convinced, the ship may have sailed for the 26-year-old.