Villa today confirmed earlier rumours and completed a loan deal for Swedish number 1 Robin Olsen.
The move brings immediate international level cover for Emi Martinez, with the 32 year old an ever present for Sweden at last summers European Championships.
Olsen has had mixed fortunes at club level in recent times, being surplus to requirements after a high profile move to Italian side Roma. He might also be familiar to some eagle eyed fans, who will recall the ‘keeper being back-up to Jordon Pickford for a single season, making 7 outings in all for Everton.
The 53 time capped player has more recently been in no-mans land at Championship side Sheffield United. Olsen was drafted in after The Blades sold Aaron Ramsdale to Arsenal, but a mixture of errors, injury and manager sacking have resulted in a change of loan club.
For Villa, it seems another temporary acquisition that, using the words of club CEO Christian Purslow, appears “opportunistic”. Olsen represents a low risk improvement of strength in depth in a position of incredible importance.
Despite a high profile error against Man Utd, Emi Martinez has been outstanding since arriving from The Emirates. The Copa America winner is now Argentina’s number 1 and is already cementing himself as not only one of Villa’s best pieces of transfer business, but as argubaly the clubs best goalkeeper of the modern era.
It won’t need The Villa Underground to tell you that we have hardly been graced with decent goalkeepers over the years. It had been a troublesome position for some time prior to Martinez’s arrival, but beyond the former Arsenal man, there’s limited strength in depth.
Jed Steer has been a loyal figure through Villa’s demise and rise, but it would be misleading to suggest that he appears likely to threaten Martinez for the number 1 shirt. There is also the reality that the club need to have a proven competent deputy in reserve for those occasions where our first choice is out injured or, as has been the case, away on international duty.
Robin Olsen joins immediately for the remainder of the campaign and is Villa’s fourth signing of the January transfer window.
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