Iliev poised to complete Mechelen move


Arsenal goalkeeper Deyan Iliev is set to leave the club on a permanent basis by signing a three-year contract with Belgian side Mechelen.

Iliev, who has been capped by Macedonia at U21 level, was a surprise deadline-day signing from FK Belasica two years ago, but, despite being afforded numerous opportunities to impress, he has struggled for consistency during his time in North London and was overtaken in the goalkeeping hierarchy last season by Matt Macey. He is likely to be involved in the first-team set-up at his new club.

Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images Europe

Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images Europe

Although he possesses impressive reflexes, Iliev’s time at Arsenal has been marred by some costly misjudgements, including a woeful mistake against Chelsea in the NextGen Series in 2013 and a red card against Barcelona in the UEFA Youth League last season. He started all of Arsenal’s matches in the latter competition during 2013/14, but kept just one clean sheet and was afforded only three starts for the U21 team.

With Damian Martinez back from loan, Macey developing well and Josh Vickers set to sign his first professional contract, Arsenal are well stocked for young goalkeepers at present, which means that Iliev’s departure will not have too much of an impact, especially as he was rather frozen out towards the end of last season.

Iliev is set to follow fellow goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski in leaving the club, meaning that an opportunity may arise for either Martinez or Macey to be promoted to the first-team squad for next season.

 

6 comments

    1. I see no reason to pay money for ruddy, when so many decent keepers are available on free transfers. Pantimillon, cesar, valdes, schwarzer, hennessey, Speroni.

      Ok some of those wouldn’t be 1st choice but with only martinez and macey as realistic 3rd choice keepers perhaps we need 2 keepers.

      I honestly cannot see anyone being brought in as first choice.

      1. Hennessey was not good enough to play in league 1, I shudder to have him play in a Champion’s league game. Valdez for all his brilliance would not be able to adapt to the level of physicality required to play in the Premiership.
        Pantilimon is leaving Manchester City to get more first team time, why would he join Arsenal to play second fiddle to Tech9?
        Cesar is on 90k a week, paying that kind of money for a substitute goalkeeper is ridiculous. Unless we can get him on loan with QPR subsidising half his wage, otherwise let’s stay clear of him.
        Speroni may be a valid alternative. However he is mainly a shot stopper rather than a catcher. The main advantage would be that he is free and has Premiership experience.

  1. Hennessey was the keeper who took Sunderland from championship to.premier league, I think a decent 3rd choice keeper. How do u know that valdes won’t adapt to the premier league, that is just an argument for the sake of one. Pantimillon, might get more action than fabianski as he is a better keeper, he might even turn out better than szczesney. I doubt ruddy would feel anyvdifferent about being on the bench. As for cesar, 90k for a first choice keeper should be the going rate, I bet hart, cech, casillas, neuer are on that. I agree 90k for a bench warmer is too high, but, u have to look at the whole package and whether cesar would remain on the bench. Don’t get me wrong cesar is far from my first choice, but if we end up buying a cheaper 1st choice striker cos we have spent money on a keeper and centre back when there are great freebies available infill be very disappointed.

    Edison Cavani and Fabregas are world class players that are within budget. I would rather have those 2 and 4 freebies, than 6 players costing 15m each. But each to his own I guess.

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