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Arsenal step up interest in Sunderland keeper

Arsenal step up interest in Sunderland keeper

Pickford could replace Ospina at the Emirates

Arsenal have stepped up their pursuit of Sunderland goalkeeper Jordan Pickford amid reports that David Ospina could leave the club in the summer.

Ospina has played backup to Petr Cech over the past couple of league seasons, and he is prepared to move on to Fenerbahce where he will be guaranteed a four-year contract on wages of around £40,000-a-week.

According to The Sunderland Echo, the Gunners were keeping close tabs on Pickford during his side's 1-0 defeat to Watford at Vicarage Road.

The 23-year-old has emerged as the first-choice goalkeeper for the Black Cats following his breakthrough during the previous campaign, and he has been tipped for big things with a move to Manchester United also on the cards.

Cech has been questioned over his performances in the player field this term, but the Arsenal hierarchy will keep faith with the Czech as they seek to find a suitable replacement for deputy Ospina.

Arsenal face a must-win game against Crystal Palace on Monday night if they to maintain their push for a top-four finish in the league standings.