London: England goalkeeper David Seaman will this week tell Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger to make him first-choice for next season or let him go.
Media reports on Monday said Wenger had not changed his mind about buying a new goalkeeper to replace Seaman, 40 in September, and making Seaman the goalkeeping coach.
However, Seaman has yet to pass all his coaching exams and current Arsenal goalkeeping coach Bob Wilson said on Monday the England keeper would not settle for second best, with Manchester City poised to make him an offer.
Seaman, who skippered the Gunners to FA Cup glory on Saturday, will meet Wenger to discuss his future this week.
The veteran ’keeper pulled off a late save to stop Southampton scoring a late equaliser but that was never going to be enough to convince Wenger to keep faith with him.
Wilson, Seaman’s friend for 13 years, told the Sun newspaper: “It is highly likely that David will go to another club. He wants to continue his career at the top and now it’s down to whether Arsene can match the offer from Manchester City or any other club.
“It’s a hell of a dilemma for Arsenal but a terrific one for David, who is playing as well as I’ve seen him play for 15 years.
“But Arsene has a burning ambition to win the Champions League and wants a keeper for 60 games. He’s worried David might not be available for all those matches.”
Wenger admitted he did not believe Seaman could last a full season. “David has been special for Arsenal. He is still at the top but the question is, how long can he stay there'”
Although declaring Seaman “the best goalkeeper in England”, the no-nonsense Frenchman is determined to freshen up his defence, including the man between the posts, ahead of next season.
Seaman said: “It’s in the gaffer’s hands. I don’t know.”
Manchester City’s former England manager Keegan is a big fan of Seaman’s and has said: “David is still a master of his trade.”
Possible replacements at Arsenal include Leeds’ Paul Robinson, reported to be unhappy at being able to renegotiate a new contract, Lokomotiv Tbilisi’s 22-year-old Georgian international Giorgi Lomaia and Brazilian World Cup goalkeeper Marcos.