Bukayo Saka must sign a new contract – or Arsenal must sell him now

To be a big club, you must act and think like a big club, and let’s be honest, Arsenal rarely act and think like one when it comes to negotiating players contracts.

Saka is the latest Gunner to have run down his contract to its final two years meaning we are in danger of seeing his value reduced.

This time next year as things stand, we would be forced to sell him for a cut price or risk losing him for nothing 12 months later.

After Sanchez, Ramsey, Wilshere and Welbeck all became free agents, Vinai Venkatesham promised the club wouldn’t be put in this position again.

Any employee with 24 months left on their deal would be make a take it or leave it offer or would be sold for a sum that benefitted the club.

That was a lie……

Ozil, Sokratis, Mustafi, Kolasinac, Aubameyang, Lacazette, Nketiah, Elneny, Bellerin, Mari, Maitland Niles, and others were all allowed to run down their contracts, costing the Gunners lots of money.

The noise coming out of the Emirates is there is zero intention for the winger to be sold this summer.

In the short term, Gooners might be happy to hear this, but we have made this mistake before.

Arsenal know they can’t afford the perception of their best players jumping ship to those above us in the table.

The Kroenke Family would struggle to continue the pretence that they have any ambition if that were the case.

Marketing experts would suggest that image would impact on shirt sales and sponsorship deals.

That’s why we wouldn’t take 60 million from Man City for Sanchez and why we were pressured to pay over the odds for Ozil to stay.

Saka has been good, not great.

He’s not the difference between us finishing in the top 4 or not.

This isn’t a young Fabregas.

We should have enough self-respect where we don’t allow ourselves to be dictated to by a 20-year-old.

I always admire Atletico Madrid and Dortmund, whose business model is to make a profit on assets, then reinvest in the team.

If Saka hasn’t the pride or respect to represent ‘the Arsenal’ long term, accept the crazy amount of money a Man City or Liverpool are willing to pay.

Listen to how Ian Wright stayed around David Rocastle’s the night before his debut and listened to stories about the club.

Think how Tony Adams, Keown and Dixon taught Vieira and Henry the values of the badge, and the honour it meant to wear the red and white.

How has it come to this?

Saka is young enough to not need to rush any move. He’s grown up in North London and has the time to see if Arteta fulfils certain promises.

As a fan who doesn’t think we will ever win the title under the current ownership, I can’t blame the midfielder for being tempted by options where his salary and chance of trophies both would dramatically increase.

If that’s his stance we should respect it and use money from his sale to buy a Gnabry.

Saying he’s not for sale now but not extending his contract is the equivalent of putting your fingers to your ears.

It’s putting a plaster over a wound.

It’s delaying an issue for a year.

It’s not what a big club do!

Dan Smith

 
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71 Comments

  1. Same applies for any player coming up on 2 years left on the contract.

    None of this “we are working on an agreement” while rolling into the next season

  2. The 2 year thing was a myth and to be honest it isnt just Arsenal where players run down their contracts. Rudiger, Lingaard, Mane and Salah come to mind.

    AW once said this will be the new norm when Van persie went to Manure as players and agents now hold the power.

    I said on a previous post that I would be surprised if Saka signs a new contract this year as he will want to see how the MA project performs next season. So next year will be crucial to keeping players like Saka, ESR and Martinelli and renewing their contracts.

    1. 100% from Saka’s point of view I definitely wouldn’t sign an extension yet unless I got offered a crazy salary….he would be wise to wait and see how things play out. If he waits till a year is left and his transfer fee is lower then that means that his potential salary can be higher at a new club.

      From Arsenal’s point of view it should be sign now or we sell, no player(or manager) is bigger than the club.

      1. If Nketiah is worth £100k p/w, then Saka should or might just be demanding £350k p/w. He might also not trust the process, as some of us do and probably some of our own players in that dressing room

    2. @NB
      Makes a whole lotta sense. Why wait around for a process that has no real substance, to develop…IJS

  3. It’s true that Saka is good but not great. I agree with that statement. I honestly do not think that Gnabry will leave Bayern Munich for an Arsenal project. But if we sell Saka for close to £100m a d Gnabry is willing to come to us, we can spend about £30m on Gnabry. And let’s be honest, Gnabry is certainly an upgrade on Saka at the moment. He’s got better end product

  4. You can’t sell someone that doesn’t want to be sold.
    It’s that simple.
    Ultimately, the power lies with the players (which is why the club agreed to cancelling so many contracts early).
    Moaning at the club for stuff that is outside their control isn’t particularly helpful, for anyone. You’re just spreading negativity for the sake f it essentially… Clickbait, with no context.
    Besides, Saka has already said, upon picking up his club player of the year award, “See you next season”.
    So, he’s planning on staying, as is his right. The club won’t complain as he’s been our PoTS twice in a row, and it gives us a chance at extending an excellent prospects contract (which I suspect he will, after playing hard-ball to get the best deal he can ).

    1. AGREE 100%

      The players do hold all the cards. Arsenal eventually got rid of the snake that is Ozil but only at a heavy financial price. It was better to get shot of him than him hanging around.

      The players’ contracts are binding. The club are hamstrung if the once upon a time darling of the club decides to run down their contact and sign elsewhere later on a free for loadsa money

      1. Snake really? I always say Arteta got a lot of loyal fans by getting rid of Ozil regardless of his ability as a coach.

        1. What a ridiculous remark
          Ozil was a snake and that has nothing to do with Arteta and his ability or lack of it

          1. I stand by my observation that Arteta’s most loyal supporters here are the ones who couldn’t stand Ozil and Wenger to some extent Wenger. If only he could’ve done that to Xhaka too!

            Yes that loyal support is nothing to do with his ability because we haven’t seen it so far.

            While kicking Ozil out is not a questionable action from the club, they still went about it in a disgraceful way while getting beaten at their own game.

            1. And I stand by mine HH. Ozil was totally divisive and I wouldn’t have cared who gave him his comeuppance – it just happened to be Arteta.
              As for whether Arteta is any good that will reveal itself in the coming weeks of the new season. I class myself as a supporter of what was a new man in football management now aiming to transition to becoming experienced. He got time from me, at least, to learn his trade. If it doesn’t pan out well for Arteta then the club will move him on. If so, I won’t be crying over it. I don’t know why you brought Wenger into the equation at all

  5. The club management is repeating similar old mistakes.
    Its not worth seeing players of absolute quality leaving arsenal for nothing……..Act now or wait to loose it all.
    We buy expensively and letting them go for nothing seriously?
    Start respecting Arsenal again…..this club Will always be bigger than any player…….COYG

  6. Funny reading some posters on here.
    Saka good but not great..
    Really?
    He is 20 and a fully fledged England international.
    What do you think Arsenal will do to replace him?
    Buy Vinicius
    Or Foden?
    Arsenal are a club in decline – make no mistake and if they want to reverse this trend they simply must keep players like Saka otherwise it will be two steps back every time…
    a 20 year local lad or some foreign mercenary out to make as much money as possible – we have had enough of them…

    1. I still maintain that he’s good, really good in fact but not great. Look at his performances over the later part of the season and you’ll see why. Moreover, he’s not exactly known for his end product, something Smith Rowe is known for and Sterling needed to learn when he arrived at Man City. That’s why Sterling is world class and Saka is not. Look at the list below:

      Foden, Vinicius, Dembele, Sancho, Mahrez, Salah, Mane, Luiz Diaz, Son, Gnabry, Neymar, Sterling, Fati, Zaha

      The players above have two things in common:
      1. That are all wingers as Saka is
      2. They are well known for their end product which Saka is not

      Football is a result oriented sport and a winger who isn’t known for scoring or assisting will not be considered as great. That said, his numbers improved this season. Let’s hope for more of the same or better next season

      1. @dgr8xt
        “Sterling is world class and Saka is not”
        “They are well known for their end product which Saka is not”
        This year Sterling scored 13 goals and Saka 12. RS is 27 while Saka is 20.
        When Sterling was 20 he scored 7 goals in 33 games….

        You know how to easily confuse me!

        1. @Admin Pat

          I will always try to avoid statistics as much as possible, but you know that Saka played the most minutes of any Arsenal player this season. Sterling isn’t a starter at all. How many goals would Sterling have scored if he played Saka’s minutes? The age doesn’t matter here cos football is usually a “here-and-now” sport. I will still prefer to have Saka in our team than Sterling cos he will certainly show more commitment (I suppose). But ability-wise, Starling is miles above Saka at the moment, and so is Gnabry

        2. @admin Sterling scored 13 and Saka 11 in the EPL, not 12. If you are adding Saka’s goal in the EFL then why aren’t you adding Sterling’s goals in the UCL and FA Cup?

          Looking at EPL this season:
          So Sterling scored 1 goal every 163 minutes and Saka scored 1 goal every 272 minutes.

          If you going to quote stats, at least show the full picture right? I’m not saying Sterling is better than Saka but let’s get the full facts if you quoting goals this season.

          1. There’s no need sugarcoating anything. STERLING IS CURRENTLY BETTER THAN SAKA. Saka has the potential to be better than Starling in the future. But for now, Sterling is miles above Saka

              1. What he is is playing in a far superior team with an attacking verve and playmakers all over the pitch … tough to say what sterling would do with the players saka is surrounded by but almost certainly would look of a lesser play than he does with city

          2. PJ…way to hold Admin in check for his cherry-picking expedition…I agree that Saka could turn out to be the better player, but, at this point and time, Sterling is the better of the two…personally, I believe that Saka will find it difficult to achieve what Sterling has unless he becomes a considerably better finisher…of course, we could help him immeasurably by giving him some wide side help in the form of an overlapping LB and/or midfielder

        3. I am sorry to say admin but I totally disagree with your comment.
          This is Saka best year and this is one of sterling worse year in city and yet they are very similar in stats. Except minutes played.
          Both mahrez and sterling have been getting double figures every season for the past couples of years with city and you won’t see them win their team best player.
          Saka had 12 goals and win our best players in two years consecutively.

          Those numbers is very good for his age, but that’s very low for sterling who have been getting better numbers in previous seasons.

          So like this initial comment, interns of end product Saka is behind, it doesn’t make him bad , just not at the level of others.
          He still have time to improve and be better. But right now he’s not anything like them.

            1. @pat, First of all we don’t know what Saka will be when he’s 27.
              We only hope he gets better.
              There’s no guaranty that he will be as good at 27 or better.
              Sterling have got that advantage.
              Even though he could be declining too.
              Secondly have you tried to look it up what sterling was at 20years compare to Saka or you did base on assumption.
              Because sterling at 20 got the same numbers of goals as Saka now.
              They both are on 23 goals.
              With more appearances than sterling between at that age.
              Although Saka got more assist to his name.
              So sterling at 20 was doing saka’s num bers.
              You can look it up if you have any doubt.
              Remember sterling now has more than 100 for city.
              Hopefully at this stage Saka would be be better, but he still have to make those numbers unless it will be base on potential. Which are not absolute.

      2. Better look at statistics before you comment. Saka scored more goals and provided more assists than Foden. Fact. And Sancho? He did well in the German League but not in the EPL Don’t dare compare him with Sancho

        Dembele? How many goals and assists? He’s lazy par Ozil. ,Zaha? How many goals and assists.

        Saka delivered 12 EPL goals and 10 assists. Foden had less and was given the award because City won the EPL

        1. @Howard

          Saka played more minutes than Foden. In fact, significantly more minutes, yet their stats for the EPL are:

          Name Matches Mins Starts Gls Asst
          Saka 38 2,978 36 11 7
          Foden 28 2,128 24 9 5

          1. “Saka played more minutes than Foden. In fact, significantly more minutes, yet their stats for the EPL are:

            Name Matches Mins Starts Gls Asst
            Saka 38 2,978 36 11 7
            Foden 28 2,128 24 9 5”

            Are you just gonna avoid the fact that Foden plays in a team parked with world class players and Saka doesn’t???

      3. Sancho and Diaz are known for end product? WtF???
        Sterling is extremely wasteful.. More so than Saka

      4. I genuinely can’t believe people are comparing sterling with Saka at this point.
        Sterling has the same numbers of goals for Liverpool as Saka does for Arsenal. He left Liverpool 7 years ago.
        same goals for city as Saka appearances with us.
        Goals only for city = 131.
        Saka’ appearance= 132.
        Now people will tell you he’s in a quality team, how come no player in city were able to outscored him.
        Not to downgrade Saka.
        Saka numbers is very good for his age and he will get better hopefully.
        But his best numbers are some people worse numbers.
        Even pepe get close to Saka numbers of goals last season in less minutes and we still didn’t rate him..
        So he’s no where near those players mentioned in terms of end product.

      5. Zaha has end product? Fati and foden are just too much publicity..give me saka before them…sancho is there but he didnt show too much this season, in the other extreme, vinicious ia there just because of this campaing, before he was very rought…i think saka has enourmous potencial because is very intelligent in 1vs1 and he has more end product that a lot of those named above

      1. Saka has been voted based on what people see in his all round play not just stats. In previous seasons he has played in a number of positions and has done pretty well as a versatile player.
        In his current position he has good stats going forward, and he is difficult to shake off the ball. Close control, dribbling, acceleration and dribbling are all top notch.
        He still needs to improve some of his accuracy and goal stats but he has already demonstrated that his all round play is at a very high level. If he continues to improve he can become truly one of the world’s best.
        Most Arsenal fans would suggest that he is one player that we should be doing our best to hold on to.
        The fact that some people seem to think that Arsenal should be happy to sell him off is quite something.
        Certainly, people may prefer certain other players. However, Bukayo Saka is already a great player in his own right.

  7. Why make a story out of nothing? Saka to city rumour is false as confirmed by the club itself.city fans ain’t calling for him to be signed cos they feel they don’t need him plus saka will be more than willing to sign the contract we’re offering him so i suggest you impatient melts to go take a chill pill.

  8. There are plenty of wingers on the market at the moment. You would love to see Saka stay but if the opportunity isn’t there, move him on. Let not forget Stirling put Liverpool in a tough position and moved… if the reinvestment is right, you can really kick on from the cash injection. It would be a blow but if gnarbry is around… won’t be much impact

  9. At the moment Saka is very young and looks like he has a very promising future because of the season he has just had. But we’ve seen this before with the likes of Wilshire, Willock, Merida and Vela etc. Players that could have been great but faded. Same applies to Deli Ali or Jesse Lingard for example. They began well but their clubs felt the need to move them on.

    If Saka want’s a massive wage it has to be earned by giving a few more years yet to prove he is the player we all hope he will be. To pay Saka a huge wage now may possibly destroy him (where ever he plays). I wouldn’t bow to the pressure of his agent just to get him signed up. I would hope he wants to stay for the love of the club and for the investment Arsenal have put into him already.

    If he doesn’t want to sign then he’s not right for the club anyway!

  10. If he is sold, you would probably have plenty people willing to accuse Arsenal/Kroenke of selling their best players.
    Must be “nice” to be able to complain either way.
    IMO Arsenal aren’t doing anything wrong here, and what would you do, if he is happy with the situation? Kick him out the door?

  11. What l cannot comprehend is that Thomas Partey earns 250,000 pounds weekly and Ben White earns 120m pounds weekly, while Gabriel earns only 50,000 pounds weekly and Saka earns 30,000 pounds weekly. That’s the problem right there.Arsenal has to sort out their wage structure. If Saka is good enough to be the top performer for Arsenal weekly at 20 yrs.old, he should be earning more money than overrated and overpaid Ben White. Pepe is paid 140,000 pounds weekly for warming the bench, whilst Saka plays every game for Arsenal. Saka should earn at least 150,000 pounds weekly based on his importance and performances, while Gabriel should not be earning less money than White. Gabriel wages should increase to at least 120,000 pounds weekly too.

    1. Great point you make! The wage structure at the club appears to be so random.

      Why not start defenders off at a base salary, and then additional wages are based on metrics like ratings, clearances, blocks, tackles, etc… otherwise you get discrepancies in wages like Gabriel and White.

      Sorry but seen nothing from White worth 120k a week, compared to his partner Gabriel.

      Same applies to Partey and Xhaka in midfield, Nketiah and Auba & Laca in attack.

      Well aware it takes bigger salaries to attract Auba, Partey, and the like, but the salaries for our young players seem so inflated.

  12. Arsenal need a foundation of talented young players. We have that. If we don’t keep them we might as well just give up.

    I just can’t believe there are people on here that are seemingly happy to see him leave. Same people that would moan if we lost a game where he might have changed the result..

  13. Will loose all the quality young talent we have there not going to stick around while not challenging for any trophies will join the big clubs and go on and achieve things in there career and not stay at a club who offers nothing good luck to any of them that leaves and goes on to have successful careers!

    1. There you go again.
      Arsenal ARE a big club, and we will challenge for top trophies, much to your dismay I am sure.
      I hope you go on to achieve success at another club too…..

      1. Pat I really think there should be some way- though I cannot think how it could easily be organised- WHERE TROLL LIKE COMMENTS FROM SUCH AS DANNY- should have to prove they are AFC supporters, before allowing such TROLL LIKE comments to constantly appear.
        BASED PURELY ON AVAILABLE EVIDENCE OF HIS POSTS, I REGARD HIM AS A TROLL , NOT A GOONER AT ALL.

          1. No let him be. Everyone is entitled to his/her opinion(s). I know it’s you’re the Admin but you don’t ban anyone because they have an opinion you don’t like. That’s not right. He didn’t even say anything grossly wrong. Don’t make any near future changes to restrict comments like his. If you don’t like what he said say it out but not banning anyone for a mild comment like this.

            Also the so called “negative” articles generate the highest number of comments by “negative people. E.g When we loose is mostly when people come out of their shells and comment the most.

      2. @Ad Pat
        Danny has a point which cannot be dismissed by calling him a troll or non AFC fan/supporter.
        At the moment, AFC is merely a big club in name only. Living off the accolades of yesteryear. Yeah, we might be challenging for top trophies in the future. I just can’t see us doing so under the rookie coach. And as much as we would not like to admit it, our young players heads would be easily turned if a Jurgen or Pep came calling with serious intent…IJS

        1. So if fans do not toe the Arteta boot licking narrative they are trolls or not Arsenal supporters
          This is ArsenalFc not bloody Artetafc .

          1. Wrong, this is my JustArsenal website we are talking about. I created this for Arsenal fans to discuss football and all things Arsenal. Not listening to people calling a fellow fan an Arteta Boot Licker.
            In case you didn’t notice, Arsenal are on the up. Our youngish new team just missed out on top four, and will improve, especially with new arrivals promised this summer. If you disagree: fine, then tell me why. Don’t tell me he’s a crap coach and all our players are crap. Talk about things that can improve us. Sack Arteta is not a comment or a solution when our rebuild is looking positive.
            If that’s all anyone has to say then let’s talk about it AFTER the transfer window at least!
            And say what you like, but I read every comment and don’t want to feel like slashing my wrists every time I log on
            Now CAN we talk about football because I’ve had enough…

  14. Such a lot of unintelligent comments on both sides of the argument about comparing Saka and Sterling. Some mention goals in games played but do not mention minutes played, instead of games.

    Then, only one I think had thnous to mention that Sterling plays for team like City, whereas SAKA plays for our lesser team.
    IF you are really intent on making comparisons , which in general , when between players, is pointless and non-productive , THEN AT LEAST make a FULL AND PROPERLY RESEARCHED LIST OF TRUE REASONS WHY YOU THINK AS YOU DO.

    It is unintelligent and biased to only pick stats that are favourable to your view. That is NOT a true comparison. But it takes an intelligent brain to know that,plainly!

    Though really it should not need esp intelligent brains but only a lack of stupid ones. Cherry picking is only done by cheats and those who wish to avoid the real truth, in favour of their own biased view. Sigh!

  15. Saka is a good young player with a bright future but needs better supporting players.

    Our midfield struggles to create, and the negative tactics and static positioning make scoring even harder.

    If Saka’s numbers are “great” then why do some say Pepe is trash with his numbers last year?

    Bit strange how a season is “great” or “trash” based on the name associated with the production.

    1. You won’t get answers for your reasonable question.
      Let me guess he’s young and didn’t cost 72m. That’s the only logic answer, apart from that, I would like to know what are their reasons.
      Secondly, how did Saka won onthe player of the year last year?? That’s what I don’t understand.
      He wasn’t the top scorer, and I am not sure he was the top provider, Or most contributions, or chances created, nor the most takes on. So what was the merit ??
      Let me guess, he was voted cause he was young and he’s an academy products.

  16. Tend to agree with above sentiments. Losing Saka will hurt but if he is hoping for an easy getaway whoever wants him must be made to pay big bucks. Half for the Kroenkes and half to reinforce the team?

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