Say I’m your number one: Five Premier League keepers who desperately need moves this January

Sat on the sidelines, these under-used Premier League goalkeepers would benefit from a change of scenery in the window.

With the January transfer window wide open, we take a look at five goalkeepers whose careers are crying out for a move away from the Premier League.

Bernd Leno

Bernd Leno Arsenal Jan22

Signed for £19million from Bayer Leverkusen in 2018, Leno was very much the first choice at Arsenal for some time.

He played in at least 30 Premier League games in each of his first three seasons at the Emirates but the writing was on the wall when Mikel Arteta signed Aaron Ramsdale towards the end of the last transfer window.

It's been cup soccer only for Leno since, although he has managed to retain his place in the German national team squad.

How long that can last remains to be seen though and, in World Cup year, more game time could be crucial to Hansi Flick's third-choice stopper.

Still, only 29, Leno must still harbour greater ambitions than playing in the Carabao Cup final - indeed he hinted to German newspaper Bild earlier this season that he could be seeking a move this month.

Losing him at this stage of the season would be problematic for the Gunners - every club would like two strong keepers in their squad - but with just 18 months left on Leno's contract, they may have a decision to make if the right offer is made.

Kepa Arrizabalaga

Kepa Arrizabalaga Chelsea pointing Sep21

Chelsea paid a world-record goalkeeper fee of £71million when signing Kepa in 2018. Yes, £71million.

He's also reportedly on £170,000 per week at Stamford Bridge so perhaps it's no wonder that he seems happy to warm the bench.

A series of high-profile mistakes, which followed hot on the heels of his famous Wembley substitution refusal under Maurizio Sarri, saw Chelsea go out and buy Edouard Mendy last season and the Senegal stopper's form means there looks little chance of Kepa regaining the jersey anytime soon.

With Kepa having earned a reputation for a clanger in England, it's easy to forget he was regarded as one of Europe's brightest talents less than four years ago and remains only 27.

Lazio have recently been linked with a move for the Spanish international but - surprise, surprise - those wages are supposedly a stumbling block.

While a move could well benefit both club and player, that issue will doubtless prove problematic for any January transfer.

Dean Henderson

Dean Henderson Man Utd Sep21

Since making plenty of good headlines with his displays on loan at Sheffield United in 2019/20, it's clear Henderson hasn't been a happy bunny for some time at Old Trafford.

It's understandable - he's played only 13 Premier League games since his return with the majority of his appearances coming in the cup competitions.

Henderson was reportedly told he would start this season as No. 1 but he wasn't available in August due to a Covid infection and David de Gea has been pretty much undroppable since.

Even a change of manager hasn't helped; in fact it has arguably hindered.

Ralf Rangnick has confirmed Henderson has requested a move but the new boss wants the England international to stay.

Henderson is open to a permanent switch - Spurs are potential suitors with Hugo Lloris' deal about to expire - but the problem is the 24-year-old is contracted until 2025. And he's on at least £100,000 a week.

Gareth Southgate picked Henderson for his European Championship squad last summer but he had to withdraw due to injury and was replaced by Aaron Ramsdale.

Ramsdale's club form means Henderson is now struggling to make the World Cup and if he's still at United come September, it's hard to see how he'll win back his spot in time to make the plane to Qatar.

Freddie Woodman

Freddie Woodman Newcastle Nov21

Another young English talent who is going nowhere fast is Newcastle's Freddie Woodman.

Woodman played for England at all the various youth levels, most notably winning the Under-20 World Cup in 2017 alongside the likes of Phil Foden and Dominic Calvert-Lewin.

But while those two have gone on to realise their senior England dream, Woodman is yet to win a cap at the highest level. And that's not just due to a nepotism worry by Gareth Southgate, who is Woodman's godfather.

Having impressed during two seasons on loan at Championship Swansea, he did manage to make his Premier League debut at the start of the current campaign but competition for places is fierce at St James' Park where Martin Dubravka is considered first choice and Karl Darlow is also in the squad.

A move away would make sense at this stage of the 24-year-old's career, although to be guaranteed game time it may have to be back to the Championship and the player himself probably feels he's done that part of his apprenticeship.

Loris Karius

Loris Karius Liverpool Aug21

Now here's a blast from the past.

You'll surely remember the 2018 Champions League final and Karius' two howlers which both resulted in goals and condemned Liverpool to a 3-1 defeat at the hands of Real Madrid.

Those who took to social media to demand Karius 'must never play for the club again' got their wish. He was loaned out to Besiktas and then, last season, Union Berlin.

The thing is he remains under contract at Liverpool and is training every day at Melwood. His deal will expire at the end of June and it's fair to say it won't be renewed. With Alisson, Caoimhin Kelleher and Adrian all ahead of him, neither will he play.

Remarkably, Karius is still only 28 so has half his career ahead of him.

Liverpool will look to offload him during the January transfer window - they are basically paying him to do nothing at the moment - but as Anfield goalkeeping coach John Achterberg told The Athletic recently, that will be down to the player and his agent.

He added: "It doesn't help anyone to sit for another six months without the feeling that you are really fighting for something."

READ MORE: Seven Premier League players who need a January move, with Man Utd duo heading the list

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