Arsenal send scouts to watch Benfica stopper Vlachodimos

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Arsenal are keen on signing Benfica goalkeeper Odisseas Vlachodimos and have sent scouts to watch the 24-year-old this season, according to Record.

What’s the word?

Unai Emery is slowly imprinting his set-up into Arsenal and further additions could be in the pipeline, with the long-term spot for the first-choice goalkeeper still up for grabs as Petr Cech has entered the final year of his contract.

The Gunners moved to bring Bernd Leno in from Bayer Leverkusen in the summer and he is still awaiting his Premier League debut – and he may face more competition for a first-team spot that he may have initially anticipated.

Portuguese outlet Record names Arsenal as one of 18 clubs to have scouted Benfica goalkeeper Odisseas Vlachodimos this season following the fine performances of the 24-year-old German, who joined the club in the summer from Panathinaikos.

Who wants him?

Arsenal are just one of the clubs keeping tabs on Vlachodimos and the report states that Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich have been eyeing the stopper for years, as they consider him to be a potential successor to World Cup winner Manuel Neuer.

Premier League sides Manchester United, Liverpool, Chelsea and Newcastle are also said to be monitoring his development, while Bundesliga duo RB Leipzig and Eintracht Frankfurt are keen to bring the former Stuttgart man back to German football.

Should he sign?

Despite signing Leno, Arsenal are probably going to have to dip into the transfer market once again after Petr Cech departs, potentially as early as next season, as the Gunners need to ensure they continue to have depth between the sticks.

However, 26-year-old Emiliano Martinez may find himself promoted to back-up stopper behind Leno in the future and the third stopper in the first-team could come from within the club’s youth ranks – with the options including 23-year-old Dejan Iliev and 24-year-old Matt Macey, the latter of whom is currently on loan with Plymouth Argyle.

Given the vast interest in Vlachodimos, Benfica are likely to command a high price for the goalkeeper and a bidding war could be sparked. Considering that Arsenal already have Leno, it would be wise to avoid a transfer that would completely unfair on the Sven Mislintat signing.