Arsenal are keen to strengthen their options between the sticks and they may just have stumbled across the perfect solution at Euro 2020. England’s Group D opponents Czech Republic may have qualified for the knockout stages in third place after their 1-0 defeat to Wembley but they are developing into the tournament’s dark horses.
In Budapest this afternoon, they dumped the Netherlands out of the competition and sent them packing with a 2-0 victory.
Tomas Holes and Patrik Schick were on target but it was their defensive solidity that gave them the foundations to flourish.
A mere minute before Matthijs de Ligt saw red for handling the ball and denying the Czechs a goalscoring opportunity, there was a huge moment at the other end of the pitch.
Former Arsenal academy forward Donyell Malen bared down on goal and tried to round Tomas Vaclik but the goalkeeper held his own to claw the ball into his clutches before pouncing on top of it.
Vaclik’s performance was more than convincing. He looked solid between the posts and the Czechs never really looked like conceding.
Yet when Euro 2020 comes to an end, the 32-year-old will not have a club to go back to. Well, immediately anyway.
That’s because he is set to part company with Sevilla where his contract has come to an end.
Vaclik lost his place in the Sevilla side to Yassine Bounou and has struggled for opportunities.
He has been excellent so far at Euro 2020 though and will therefore not be short of options as his agent looks to secure his next move.
With Arsenal currently searching for a new goalkeeper, Vaclik could be the perfect acquisition.
Not only will he not cost a transfer fee he’s also used to competing for the No 1 shirt.
Runar Alex Runarsson has failed to put pressure on Bernd Leno since replacing Emiliano Martinez.
He is not deemed good enough for the club, hence why Many Ryan joined on loan from Brighton in January.
But negotiations over turning that move into a permanent deal have stalled, with Arsenal now exploring alternatives.
Leno has already made it clear he would be keen to pursue a new challenge if one came calling.
Arsenal are therefore scanning the market for his potential replacement with Aaron Ramsdale and Andre Onana amongst potential options.
Vaclik is more than capable of stepping up and his services would be of value even if he isn’t first-choice in north London.
In the meantime, Arsenal can wait for Onana’s doping ban to end in November before they snap him up from Ajax.
There is definitely interest in the Cameroonian but Mikel Arteta wants another goalkeeper signed now.
After his heroics at Euro 2020, Edu and co should look no further than Vaclik, who is already experienced at the highest level…