The Colombia shot stopper says he has to look up every time he sees an opposition goalkeeper in the tunnel, and admits it adds a bit of pressure
Arsenal’s David Ospina says being one of the shortest goalkeepers in England comes with added pressure.
Ospina signed for the Gunners from Lille last summer following some stand-out performances for Colombia at the World Cup, and has established himself as Arsene Wenger’s first choice in the Premier League in recent weeks.
But he says that at just over six feet tall it can be hard before games when he lines up alongside English football’s giants.
“At first, you laugh, because it’s true!” he told L’Equipe. “When I’m in the tunnel and I see the opposing team’s goalkeeper, I have to look up. In England, they’re all two heads taller than me!
“They’re six feet three or even taller. Courtois, De Gea, Hart, you can laugh but it puts a bit of pressure on you. Even Hugo Lloris looks small and he is around six foot one. I’m the smallest at six foot!”
Ospina, despite the height disadvantage, has dislodged Wojciech Szczesny since the turn of the year and is relishing the chance to play in the Premier League.
“I have great respect for the other two goalkeepers Szczesny and Damian Martinez. Everyone has a chance, but I had my opportunity and you have to take advantage.
“When the coach contacted me after the World Cup, I said yes immediately. Playing in England was a dream. In Colombia, on television, we saw the Spanish and English leagues because of Asprilla’s games at Newcastle and Juan Pablo Angel at Aston Villa. I preferred the English football passion.”