Simon Mignolet's five-year deal may have ensured the player's family won't be going hungry anytime soon, but it has not turned the player into a reliable number one option for Jürgen Klopp's Liverpool. Wojciech Szczesny's current Arsenal deal runs out on June 30th of this year, making him available to negotiate a pre-contract agreement in advance of a free transfer in the Summer.
With no apparent movement by Arsenal to re-sign the player, and some question yet on whether Roma--where Szczesny has spent the last season--will move for the 25 year old Poland International, the player's availability to Liverpool is a story that's made a rounds in the English press during the international break.
The question, of course, is whether Liverpool would be interested in moving for him. While he's a firm tier under targets like Marc-Andre ter Stegen or Bernd Leno, Szczesny is nonetheless an interesting target to consider.
With 2.36 saves per goal registered in 26 appearances in the Serie A this year, Szczesny has reconciled his form in Italy this year. It was not so long ago he was thought of as Arsenal's solution to their long standing goalkeeper problem. Big, tall, decent ability in his feet, and at times a spectacular shot stopper, it's been a bit surprising to see the extent to which the guy's confidence was derailed with the Gunners.
While no one is second guessing the decision to give Petr Cech the starting gloves, nor that the Polish would be able to take them off of him any time soon, there is certainly an argument to be made that he is a better option than David Ospina. That same argument could even be made of the comparison between Szczesny and Liverpool's Mignolet.
While both players are guilty of calamitous breakdowns, and both have had their fair of struggles in commanding the aerial threat posed by Premier League teams. Having witnessed the player's rough times in the Premier League first hand, many will quickly discard the possibility that Szczesny is a serious solution to Liverpool's Mignolet problem. Perhaps too quickly.
At 25, there is a lot of room left for the player to grow and mature. And as he's shown with Roma, given a stable defensive context to perform, Szczesny has some outstanding footballing ability in his locker. With a solid Euro performance for a highly competitive Polish outfit, Szczesny may be primed to surprise many viewers who's rating of his ability and form may be a touch outdated.
Considering the fees bandied about for some of the other goalkeeping targets reportedly on Liverpool's transfer radar, there's as much to be said for the relative ease of a free transfer as there is for the cost.
What do you think? Yes, no, maybe? Is he a legitimate top choice target, or would LIverpool have to wiff on quit a few targets before he becomes a reasonable proposition? Is this a man to both push Simon Mignolet to his top form, and deliver Liverpool the consistent quality between the uprights to make a go of some silverware next season? Or perhaps you'd rather have a basket of crispy, juicy chicken tenders commanding that Liverpool back line...