Arsenal star David Raya 'training XL Bully to defend him' despite ban on breed

Arsenal star David Raya 'training XL Bully to defend him' despite ban on breed

WATCH NOW: Sports round-up as David Raya trains XL Bully to defend him

Jack Otway

By Jack Otway

Published: 26/02/2024

- 11:42

The Spaniard joined the Gunners on loan from Brentford back in the summer

Arsenal star David Raya is training an XL Bully to protect him amid raids on the homes of football stars, according to reports.

The Spaniard is currently Mikel Arteta's first-choice goalkeeper, having dislodged Aaron Ramsdale following his arrival back in the summer.

Over the past few years, raids on the homes of Premier League footballers have become more frequent.

Victor Lindelof, Raheem Sterling and Jack Grealish, of Manchester United, Chelsea and Manchester City respectively, are among those to be targeted by thieves.

David Raya Arsenal

Arsenal star David Raya is training his XL Bully to protect him, his girlfriend and his house


And The Sun say Raya is training his dog, Goku, to defend him.

XL Bullies were recently outlawed after a spate of attacks in Britain, with Prime Minister Rishi Sunak branding the breed a 'danger'.

Raya, however, has an exemption certificate with an expert saying the Spaniard is a 'responsible owner'.

The Arsenal star and his girlfriend, Tatiana Trouboul, reportedly 'adore' the dog despite the controversy that surrounds the breed.

Goku lives in a secure cage at the couple's home in north London.

Raya has often shared snaps of himself and his dog on social media, with the Arsenal star visibly besotted.

The report says Raya wants Goku to 'guard their property' to ensure their home isn't targeted by thieves.

He has hired experts from Elite Protection Dogs to train his pooch, with a spokesperson for the firm saying: “David Raya has one XL Bully.

"He is called Goku, he is a one-year-old. David’s had him since a puppy.

“Everyone with XL Bullys is worried. But David is a responsible owner, he wants to be responsible with him.

“We are training Goku on a long-term contract.”

Elite Protection Dogs has 35 years experience of training dogs, charging up to £20,000 for their services.

XL Bullies, even ones that had previously been regarded as 'soft and loving' have been in the spotlight over the past few months.

At the end of last year, it became illegal for XL Bullies to be out in public without a lead and muzzle.

It is also a criminal offence to sell, breed, give away or abandon the dogs as well.


Arsenal David Raya

Arsenal star David Raya pictured with his XL Bully


This month, a law was passed that means UK citizens must have an exemption certificate if they're to own the canines.

Dogs must also be microchipped, neutered and kept in a secure place, while owners must have third-party liability insurance as well.

Meanwhile, Raya initially struggled after his move to the Emirates Stadium.

But he's turned a corner in recent weeks and has established himself as the Gunners' No 1, ahead of Ramsdale.

And Arteta lavished praise on the 28-year-old earlier this month, saying: "What I like about David, as well is what he does in goal.

XL Bully

Arsenal star David Raya is in love with his XL Bully despite the ban on the breed


"The things that he prevents us from, you don’t even see because they don’t happen, because he has anticipated them.

"But yeah, obviously he had the environment that was very challenging. But that’s what I love about him.

"The players with the courage and the character and personality. "When even it is like this, they want to be themselves and they push themselves to do that.

"He has earned the right to be very respected and I’m really happy that he’s winning."

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