How sleeping in and missing a bus kick-started Aaron Ramsdale’s journey to Arsenal

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 (Arsenal FC via Getty Images)
(Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

Aaron Ramsdale has revealed how oversleeping and missing the Bournemouth team bus proved the “catalyst” to kick-start his career.

The Arsenal goalkeeper is back with the England squad for the World Cup qualifiers against Andorra and Hungary and could make his debut against the minnows on Saturday night, with Gareth Southgate set to field a much-changed side.

Ramsdale, 23, joined Arsenal from Sheffield United in the summer and has quickly established himself as No1, but just two years ago he was on loan at AFC Wimbledon, who were the visitors to the Emirates Stadium in the EFL Cup last month.

He was sent on loan to south London as a punishment after missing Bournemouth’s EFL Cup quarter-final at Chelsea in December 2018, frustrating then Cherries manager Eddie Howe and assistant Jason Tindall, who were at St George’s Park to watch England training on Wednesday.

“I don’t think I have realised yet how it has happened, and the journey I have had,” Ramsdale said. “I definitely had a little snippet of that when we played Wimbledon the other week in the cup and I got to see my old goalie coach, who I still speak to but have not seen for a long time.

Aaron Ramsdale celebrates after helping AFC Wimbledon stay up in League One while on loan there (Getty Images)
Aaron Ramsdale celebrates after helping AFC Wimbledon stay up in League One while on loan there (Getty Images)

“It brought back all the good memories of that period with Wimbledon. I spoke to Eddie Howe and Jason Tindall on Wednesday and I think the major thing for me was well documented.

“I missed the bus one time by sleeping in, and that’s why I went out on loan to Wimbledon. That was the catalyst, and I went out on loan and proved my worth and got myself into the Bournemouth team a year later. Hopefully sooner rather than later, when everything calms down and I am really settled at Arsenal, I might be able to think about my journey so far.”

Ramsdale was expected to face a tough battle with Bernd Leno for the No1 shirt after joining Arsenal for £24million but he has quickly established himself ahead of the German in Mikel Arteta’s side, conceding just once in four matches.

“I’ve had possibly the best month I could have wished for,” he said. “Not something I expected so soon. I believed in my ability to get into the team but I thought it would take a while transitioning to the way they play, new team-mates.

“We’ve had a good month, the only thing that would have been better was four out of four clean sheets. If that’s the only thing we are complaining about, I’ll take that all day long.”

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Last month, Arsenal legend David Seaman returned to the club to assist with the youth teams on an informal basis and Ramsdale revealed he had been given some advice by the former England keeper.

“David said just to be myself,” he said. “We haven’t worked with each other as such, but he came into watch training and we had a general chit-chat.

“I probably chewed his ear off about his career and about how my transfer to Arsenal was a similar situation to when he joined.

“I think he appreciates that he can give certain advice, but also that things have changed since he played. Hopefully further down the line we can have more conversations with each other and build up a relationship that way.”

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