Arsenal Chairman Peter Hill-Wood says wages paid to players are ‘out of hand’ and that the club will not bend to demands from Theo Walcott as he stalls over a new contract.
Arsenal have offered Walcott £75,000 per week (plus bonuses, incentives, image rights and more which would substantially increase his package … fnarr) but that offer was deemed ‘unacceptable’ according to PHW.
Speaking to the Daily Star the Chairman said, “We have made an offer which he didn’t think was acceptable and that is the end of it. We think it is a very reasonable offer. We have got our general overall wage structure and we are not prepared to break it for anybody.
“For the moment his people are still talking to us and we hope it will be resolved. But don’t ask me when, because I haven’t a clue.”
And after a 12 month period during which Walcott’s people have walked away from talks more than once, Hill-Wood said he remained hopeful that the England international would stay but hinted that the player’s advisers are leading him astray.
“I hope that he will eventually come round and sign. It will be a pity if he does not, but the whole issue of pay for footballers has got totally out of hand and they don’t get terribly well advised a lot of the time.”
It’s clear there was some brinksmanship going on this summer with Walcott’s agents trying to use the fact he was approaching the final year of his deal to squeeze more money out of Arsenal, but with no concrete offers from anywhere else, even in those circumstances, stalemate was reached.
Weekend reports suggested there would be further discussions between the club and Walcott’s representatives with the player ‘ready’ to sign a new deal, but as long as Arsenal’s financial offer remains ‘unacceptable’ and with a Bosman looming we wouldn’t be holding our breath.