There seems to be a lot of contract uncertainty at Arsenal at the moment, but there has been some positive news today as three players agreed to contract extensions. Francis Coquelin, Olivier Giroud and Laurent Koscielny have all signed new contracts at the club and that will please supporters as all three have become important figures at the club. It is the agreement of Koscielny that will be most pleasing as he is seen as one of the best centre backs in the Premier League and he is now going to be at the club until at least 2020.
Although Arsenal fans would have been hoping for the contract renewals of Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez to be announced, this is still good news. It provides the club with some continuity and may help convince others to agree to new deals. The next few months will play a huge part in the club’s talks with those individuals. They need to show that they can challenge for trophies, otherwise they may feel that their talent is being wasted in North London. The future of Arsene Wenger could also play a part. Although he has a mixed relationship with the fan-base, Wenger is well respected and if he leaves, that could damage the Gunners’ hopes of holding onto their two key men.
One of the rumours doing the rounds today involves a familiar name to Arsenal supporters. Alvaro Morata has been consistently linked to the club over the past few years and he has once again been touted as a possible target. Arsene Wenger is known to be a long term admirer of the Spanish forward and he could be ready to launch an official bid in the coming weeks. Despite only just moving back to Real Madrid, he is unhappy at the lack of first team chances and may jump at the chance of moving to Arsenal.
This one would excite supporters and finally provide the squad with the quality frontman that they have been lacking in recent seasons. Olivier Giroud has shown himself to be an excellent impact sub and it could be worthwhile bringing in a player like Morata to be the first choice striker. He has proven himself at the highest level with Real Madrid, Juventus and Spain, and at the age of 24, he still has the potential to grow into a world class player. It is only a rumour at this stage and Arsenal fans shouldn’t get too excited, but this would be a good signing if the story develops.
According to the Times, Arsenal could be ready to let club captain Per Mertesacker leave on a loan deal this month. The German has only six months left on his contract and is keen to extend his stay in North London, but Arsenal may ask him to prove his fitness out on loan before agreeing to a contract extension. He is unlikely to play a huge part at Arsenal after he does return and it may be better for his career if he does recuperate away from the spotlight of Arsenal.
Arsenal have a very strong first choice centre back pairing of Laurent Koscielny and Shkodran Mustafi, while Gabriel has been excellent when he has been required to play. They also have Rob Holding at the club, therefore Mertesacker isn’t required. That said, Arsenal are unlikely to renew his contract and therefore there is little point in a loan move for the German. They should keep him at the club as cover and then let him go in the summer. He has been a good player for Arsenal, but he is past his best and the club should move on.
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