Anyone who has been watching Arsene Wenger’s reign at Arsenal for many years will know that he is very keen on keeping the ‘continuity and togetherness’ of the squad intact, and only likes to add one or two new players per season so as to not disrupt that harmony. He likes to get players contract’s extended well before they end, usually before 18 months so that he knows that they are committed, but for some reason there are many many squad members that are still in limbo at the moment.
It is not just Ozil and Sanchez, there is a long list of other players whose contracts run out in 2018, namely:
Olivier Giroud, Jack Wilshere, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Kieran Gibbs, Carl Jenkinson, Wojciech Szczesny and Mathieu Debuchy.
Also we have Per Mertesacker, Yaya Sanogo and Santi Cazorla with contracts that finish this coming summer, and it is only the last-named that Wenger has announced will be given another year. As Le Prof said when asked the usual questions about Ozil and Alexis: “We work as well on Giroud and on many players,” he said. “There are six or seven cases at the moment but that is the usual case, it is every year like that.
“We have started talking to Oxlade-Chamberlain, we’ve started with Santi as well and will certainly extend with him. We will work with Giroud as well and on many players.
“That explains to you why we have a lot of work to do, but you are only interested in two cases.”
Is it really normal to have half the squad at risk of letting their contracts run down? I don’t think so. I am seriously beginning to think that Wenger is quite happy to let these negotiations roll on until this summer when the most important contract will be decided, his own!
If Arsenal fail to impress again this season, and come nowhere close to winning a trophy, then I think fan pressure will cause Le Prof to finally retire. At that point, a new manager will have to come in who can then decide himself which players he wants to keep and which ones he wants to sell. And the sales will generate the cash for him to bring in his own players and make the team his own.
Does that sound like a reasonable scenario?