Arsenal set to offer defender a contract extension

Per Mertesacker

The Gunners are looking to tie down Per Mertesacker with a new three-year contract.

German international has opened talk with Arsenal about a contract extension according to 'Goal'. His current deal expires in 2015 and the club are looking to add two years onto that deal.

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Per Mertesacker joined from Werder Bremen in August 2011 for £8m. Despite having a shaky start to his Arsenal career he has gone on to establish himself in the side and has performed admirably so far this season. When Mertesacker arrived it was quickly noted that pace was not one of his strongest attributes, however, since then he has gone on to replace captain Thomas Vermaelen in the side, striking up a strong partnership with Laurent Koscielny. 

His defensive partner can make up for Mertesacker with his pace and they seem to compliment each other well. The Hanover born defender has played every minute of 11 of the Gunners 12 matches this season, missing the Sunderland match through illness. He is also a starter in the German side, playing in both World Cup qualifiers last month.

Arsenal fans are happy with his performances but remain to be convinced whether he is good enough to defend against the strongest attacks in the Champions League. This contract would mean Mertesacker will still be playing at the Emirates Stadium when he is 32, and at that point they could be looking for a more youthful approach.

It remains to be seen whether Bacary Sagna will also be offered a new contract. The Frenchman's contract situation is the most pressing, with his running out at the end of the season. He is said to have numerous suitors, with Monaco and PSG amongst others interested in his signature. 

Carl Jenkinson is waiting in the wings, but Sagna himself has yet to commit and pledge his future to the club. The prospect of leaving on a free-transfer and a potential big pay day in wages could lure him away.

image: © Ronnie Macdonald

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