Arsenal have today announced that five players have been given new long-term contracts at the club and they are all young, British talents. However, there is still no deal for the man everyone is talking about – Theo Walcott.
When the Gunners’ faithful heard that five players had put pen-to-paper, they must have breathed a huge sigh of relief thinking that Walcott would have been one of the names on the list. However, he has still not agreed a deal with the club.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Carl Jenkinson, Aaron Ramsey, Kieron Gibbs and Jack Wilshere are the men to have committed their future to Arsenal and although the Walcott saga is frustrating, this is superb news.
Oxlade-Chamberlain and Wilshere are the names that really stand out as if ever their contracts started to run-out, then they would attract the attention of a lot of clubs in the Premier League. It seems as though the days of Arsenal playing an all foreign eleven might be a thing of the past and it is great to see.
When on form, the Gunners play some of the best football in the league, they are a well run club with top-of-the-range facilities, so it can only be a positive sign for the England and Wales national team.
Manager Arsene Wenger said: “I believe when you have a core of British players, it’s always easier to keep them together. We are delighted that these five young players have all signed new long-term contracts.
“Jack [Wilshere] is certainly the best known, the leader of this group – but the other four players are exceptional footballers and we’re very happy that we could conclude their new deals at the same time.”
If these men all manage to stay fit and honour their new-deals, then the future is looking bright for Arsenal. It is amazing what difference a week can make. Seven-days-ago, they had just been dumped out of the Capital One Cup by Bradford City and were in ‘crisis’.
Now though, the North Londoners know they can move into third with a win on Saturday at Wigan Athletic, something that would have seemed a long way off a couple of weeks ago.
If they have a good run through Christmas and manage to agree a deal with Walcott, the Emirates Stadium could be a very happy place in January. With Arsenal though, nothing is ever certain and it does have the potential to go very wrong indeed.