Schmeichel: Given too good for bench

Leeds goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel has urged Shay Given to give up trying to force his way back into Manchester City's first team and find a new club.

Arsenal, Fulham and Celtic have all been linked with Republic of Ireland international, who has lost his place to England's current No.1 Joe Hart following the youngster's return from a loan spell at Birmingham City.

GEAR: New Manchester City shirts, plus retro tops and fashionware available here with 10% off

Although 10 years his junior, Schmeichel knows from first hand experience how it feels to lose your place between the Manchester City sticks.

Schmeichel began the 2007/08 season brightly for the Blues before the emergence of Hart pushed the young Dane onto the sidelines.

And Schmeichel, like Given, knew he was too good to sit on the bench.

“I hope for Shay’s sake that he leaves, because he is too good to be sitting on someone’s bench,” Schmeichel told talkSPORT.

“It is horrible. I experienced it a lot during my time at City and there’s absolutely nothing you can do.

“Goalkeeper is such a specialised position and managers tend to keep it the same all the way through the season so it’s very demoralising and disheartening.”

The Irishman has indicated that he will not settle for a substitute role at Eastlands this season, and with Hart performing miraculously against both Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool, it appears that Given may need to depart for pastures new.

Given's possible availability is believed to have alerted Emirates Stadium supremo Arsene Wenger, who is on the lookout for a more experienced stopper to replace the inconsistent Manuel Almunia and Lukasz Fabianksi.

NEWS: Schwarzer keen to join Arsenal

Wenger has already been strongly linked with Fulham's Mark Schwarzer, who he is thought to consider the perfect mentor for future No.1 Wojciech Szczesny.

However, Manchester City may be reluctant to sell to the Gunners as they pose a threat to their Champions League ambitions, which could result in Given heading either to Fulham - pending the future of Schwarzer - or Celtic.

By Tyler Stellman

Interact: Twitter * Facebook * Forums