Sunday, November 18, 2007
Lehmann back to his best
By 1970’s Gooner
The news coming out of Lehmann’s corner recently has been that he will stay in London until the end of the season; and this after taking into account his family’s wishes.
"My goal is to play for Arsenal again," said the keeper "I don't know if I can expect my children to change schools halfway through the year. I can't deny my family is more important than Euro 2008."
What usually happens when a period of uncertainty is finally brought to a close is that the settling of the mind brings the best out of the player (or anyone come to that). And Lehmann certainly produced his best during Germany’s game against Cyprus which was won 4-0.
You might say that playing well against the minnows of Cyprus hardly qualifies as a top level performance. You may be right; but this argument does not hold for a goalkeeper, as a save is a save whoever is firing the shot at goal.
Although Germany dominated the game the Cypriots created enough chances to have scored at least one goal but they were denied by Lehmann’s excellent saves.
He made goal saving blocks when the Cypriots were in on one to one on goal on three separate occasions and several saves from shots inside the area; all reminiscent of his saves when he was on top form for Arsenal.
One save in particular was from point blank pushing the shot on the post when it looked a certain goal.
“He had a good game and appears to be in good form even if he does not play for Arsenal a lot” said Joachim Löw, the Germany coach.
Lehmann’s decision to stay on is a major boost for Arsenal’s title aspirations as having two capable goalkeepers available for the rest of the season will provide excellent cover when needed; whoever of the two is going to provide that cover.
And judging by Lehmann’s performance for Germany last night who knows who will be the number one goalkeeper.