Despite being the Icelandic number 1 Arni Gautur Arason has featured in a lot of reserve team games in his career. After playing 24 games in his home-league on Iceland, he got the chance to prove himself with top Norwegian outfit Rosenborg BK. His first two years at the club was in the shadow of Ola By Riise. Then he enjoyed two good seasons as number one, featuring in the Champions League and winning the Norwegian League on both occations. After Rosenborg aquired the services of the talented Espen Johnsen, Arni once more found himself in the reserves, and when his contract was due to expire in January 2004, the Icelandic international hesitated to sign a new deal.
He initially had talks with quite a few interested clubs, including Sturm Graz. But in the end it was a short term contract with Manchester City that made him put pen to paper. This time it was to become understudy to Englands number 1 David James, who actually signed in the same week as Arni. The club expected him to cover the ground while Nicky Weaver was recovering from injury, and he knew that he had to make an impression when given the chance. For Arni a good run in the FA-cup was a good run for himself, because James was cup-tied in his first season for the blues.
Arni made an impressive debut for City in the 4th round FA-cup replay at White Harte Lane. After going down 3-0 in the first half, with goals that must have made him wonder if all shots in the Premiership was going in by the posts, Arni was a key element in the turnaround of all turnarounds. An incredible double save following a Christian Ziege free-kick put him in the hearts of the City-fans for years to come. City went on to win 4-3, with one man short and Anelka injured. If Arni pulls more performances like that out of the hat he will be hard to overlook, even with Englands number 1 in the squad.