After months of negotiations, Mikel Arteta says he’s confident that Bukayo Saka will commit his long-term future to Arsenal soon.
The 18-year-old has enjoyed an outstanding season at the Emirates, breaking into the first team squad to become one of the first name’s on the team sheet. This season he has 10 assists and three goals in 32 appearances.
Out of contract in the summer of 2021, the club has been trying to tie down the versatile winger to a new deal for some time. However, with the player delivering on the pitch, his representatives have been happy to bide their time knowing full well his value has been increasing on a weekly basis.
“I am very positive that everything is going to be done with Bukayo very shortly,” Arteta told his pre-Southampton press conference on Tuesday.
“The communication between the club, agents and the family has been going on for months and is very fluent.
“The player and the family know how much trust I have in him and he’s just showing that every week. His consistency levels are getting better and better.
“I’m so excited by the young players we have, we just need the right environment around them to explode.
“Bukayo is doing that even in difficult circumstances which is even more merit for him.”
Having had our attention diverted by the need to secure a short-term loan agreement with Dani Ceballos and permanent deals with David Luiz, Cedric Soares and Pablo Mari our contract team can now return their focus to nailing down Saka and captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
It looks like a decision on any further squad additions will now wait until the end of the season when our financial situation will be clearer. Trying to second guess how much money we’ll have when we don’t know if we’ll be in Europe has proved very problematic for the club.
“At the moment, just to predict what is going to happen in the transfer window is impossible,” said Arteta.
“You can see one or two clubs doing these sorts of [big] deals, but the rest is really, really quiet.
“As I told you, we have to assess the financial situation that we have, and as well the results and where we finish in the season will dictate whether we have a narrow gap or a bigger gap to do any deals.
“I think we are going to have to wait another four to six weeks to see what we are able to do.”