Runar Alex Runarsson is set to travel to Turkey this week to join newly-promoted Super Lig side Altay on a season-long loan deal from Arsenal, according to football.london.
The Gunners paid Dijon £1.5m for the Icelandic shot-stopper only last September, but the 26-year-old endured an underwhelming first season. Mikel Arteta only fielded him on six occasions across all competitions, with his last being a 15-minute cameo in February.
Runarsson was Arteta’s number one choice in the group stage of the Europa League, but relied on Bernd Leno in the knockout phase. The arrival of Mat Ryan on loan from Brighton in January further hindered his hopes, with Runarsson making one league outing all season.
Runarsson will fly to Turkey this week to finalise a season-long move to Altay with his Arsenal role already occupied. Football.london expect Arteta will call up youngster Arthur Okonkwo to be his number three, which the Express previously noted.
The Express discussed Okonkwo’s north London role earlier this month amid talks between Arsenal and Altay over Runarsson. The Izmir outfit will compete in their first top-flight campaign since 2003, after securing promotion via the 1. Lig play-offs over rivals Altinordu.
Runarsson will want Altay reset after Arsenal horrors
Runarsson will hope his move to newly-promoted Super Lig side Altay represents a reset after his Arsenal horrors. The last 12-months have been a disaster for the £40,000-per-week shot-stopper, who still has three years on his Gunners contract.
He will hope a move to Altay offers him chances to regain some support from Arteta and Technical Director Edu. The Arsenal boss was clearly never comfortable with relying on the Iceland international at key stages, despite offering some praise.
Arteta said, via the Gunners’ website in February: “He works really hard and he’s fitting in really well around the dressing room. He’s a really nice boy, really humble”. And showing that hard work at Altay will be key to Runarsson ensuring he has a future at Arsenal.