Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says he is “99 per cent” certain that Francis Coquelin will sign a contract extension with the Gunners.
The French midfielder’s current deal expires at the end of the season, but Arsenal will reportedly offer him a new three-year contract to stay at the Emirates Stadium following his impressive run in the first team over recent weeks.
Coquelin was recalled from his loan spell at Charlton Athletic last month to cover the injured Aaron Ramsey and has since established himself as a key midfielder for the north London outfit.
Man City performance
The 23-year-old has played the full 90 minutes in each of Arsenal’s four most recent Premier League fixtures, including the shock 2-0 win away at Manchester City earlier this month.
Coquelin was one of Arsenal’s standout players at the Etihad Stadium and deservedly earned the plaudits from fans and pundits alike for his disciplined performance in defensive midfield.
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Asked about the player’s future in his pre-match press conference earlier today, Wenger was quoted by ESPN as saying: “It is 99% [certain] that he will stay here."
Mikel Arteta doubts
However, Wenger could not confirm reports that club captain Mikel Arteta had agreed a one-year contract extension, despite a public claim from the Spaniard’s agent this week.
"We have nothing to announce on Mikel Arteta," Wenger added, according to Guardian football writer David Hytner.
Wenger’s coy response regarding Arteta leaves questions marks over the midfielder’s Arsenal future.
The 32-year-old is currently out of action with an ankle injury and is not expected to return until the final weeks of the campaign, shortly before his current contract expires.
The future of Arsenal's midfield
With Coquelin impressing and following the arrival of highly-rated Poland Under-17 international Krystian Bielik, it’s possible that Wenger will opt to move Arteta on this summer, if recent reports regarding his contract extension are inaccurate.
Coquelin, meanwhile, must continue to prove that he is a player Arsenal can rely on in the biggest matches. His next big test will come on February 7, when the Gunners make the trip to White Hart Lane to face fierce local rivals Tottenham.
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