Mikel Arteta handed new Arsenal transfer priority after Reiss Nelson contract breakthrough

football.london   27/05/2023 07:00

Arsenal's transfer business will be under the microscope this summer as Mikel Arteta looks to close the gap between his squad and Manchester City. Many will look at incomings and outgoings as the way to do just that, but perhaps one of the other solutions comes within the squad itself.

The Gunners have already started making progress on this, signing Aaron Ramsdale, Gabriel Martinelli and Bukayo Saka all to new long-term deals, reflecting their importance in the squad. The latest that seems likely to join them in committing their future to the project is Reiss Nelson.

football.london understands the young winger looks set to sign a new four-year deal at the club, having nearly reached the end of his current contract this summer. The Hale End academy product has played an important role at times this season, none more so than his 98th minute winner against Bournemouth at the Emirates Stadium.

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The squad building shouldn't stop there though and progress has to be made elsewhere, with Arteta still needing to tie down some of his best players. After Nelson, the priority has to be two other key stars that have helped make the project tick this year in Martin Odegaard and William Saliba.

The former has been handed the captaincy this season and often stepped up to the plate, but with just 24-months remaining on his deal, there will be a desire to keep him for a longer period of time. Given his importance, and only being 24-years-old, there must be a concerted effort to negotiate a new extension for Odegaard.

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Then there's Saliba, who has had some testing times earlier in his Arsenal career with loans, but his influence this campaign has been clear to see. The Frenchman has helped transform the backline and his absence through injury has clearly impacted the team and following results.

The 22-year-old has a bright future ahead, though Arsenal only hold one-year left on his contract with a further year extension on top. Making a move to keep Saliba for the foreseeable future must be another priority alongside making sure that Odegaard also signs up once more.

While many will have their heads turned towards the new players that will improve the team, perhaps the most important business Arsenal will do all summer is keeping the spine of the team for years to come.


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