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Ospina to call Arsenal tune at Wembley final

Colombian will continue as the Gunners’ Carabao Cup goalkeeper – and DJ – and start between the sticks ahead of Petr Cech against Man City

22 February, 2018 — By Steve Barnett

DJ David Ospina will be responsible for pumping up the Arsenal players on Sunday before they walk out at Wembley to tackle Manchester City in the Carabao Cup final.

Manager Arsene Wenger – to “maintain clarity” – has confirmed that the Colombian will continue as the Gunners’ cup keeper and start between the sticks ahead of Petr Cech.

“It’s always a difficult decision but we are always clear about that since the start of the season,” he said. “I have two world-class goalkeepers and I decided from early on to have clarity in the games we play, so I will maintain that.”

The news will be music to Ospina’s ears. The 29-year-old has revealed that following Olivier Giroud’s switch to Chelsea, he has been relishing a new responsibility in the dressing room.

“Olivier used to be in charge of the music selection but now that he’s gone, sometimes I select the music,” said Ospina. “We try to create a happy mood before we walk onto the pitch.

“Recently we have been listening to a lot of J Balvin, a Colombian artist who produces really good music – it just makes us smile. Afterwards different people play all sorts of music but beforehand it’s always reggaeton.

“I play the stuff that I listen to anyway and the other players seem to like it. I just set my phone down and start off with some reggaeton, but anyone can select whatever they fancy.”

In other team news, Aaron Ramsey remains a doubt for Sunday’s showpiece but could make the bench as he continues his recovery following a groin injury, while Mesut Ozil “should be OK” for the big game having recently suffered with sickness.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan, however, is cup-tied because of his involvement in the competition earlier this season with Manchester United. Striker Alexandre Lacazette is out for another month following knee surgery, leaving Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to lead the line.

“Mesut was sick until Wednesday,” said Wenger. “Otherwise I would certainly have played him in the Europa League against Östersunds. He should be OK for Sunday.

“Ramsey had a good training session but he’s a bit short for the game against Östersunds. We’ll see how his evolution goes from now until Sunday, I don’t rule him out yet, it depends how well he improves.”


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