Mikel Arteta ready to accept Arsenal's one-year contract extension as the Gunners' captain wants to stay at the club

Arteta appeared close to a summer exit only to reaffirm his commitment to Arsenal and looks likely to remain with the Gunners until 2016

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The Independent Online

Arsenal have offered captain Mikel Arteta the option of extending his contract by an extra year after the club offer the midfielder an new deal until the end of next season, with Arteta ready to prolong his stay with the Gunners.

Arteta has been with the club since arriving from Everton in 2011 when Arsene Wenger made a string of signings in the closing days of the transfer window after suffering an embarrassing 8-2 defeat to Manchester United.

Now 32 years old, Arteta has taken on the captaincy following the summer exit of Thomas Vermaelen, although his future was far from clear as his current contract is due to expire at the end of the season. Arteta’s hopes of earning a new deal have also been hit by two injuries early in the campaign, the second of which will keep him out of the Champions League tie against Galatasaray on Wednesday and Sunday’s trip to Stamford Bridge.

Having already missed a month of action due to suffering a twisted ankle in the draw against Besiktas last month, Arteta will hope that he can regain full fitness and put these niggling injuries behind him in order to lead out the Gunners after the international break.

 

Arsenal remain hopeful that they will have their skipper back for the visit of Hull on 18 October in a repeat of last season’s FA Cup final.

With Arsenal’s rather infamous policy of offering players over-30 no more than a one-year extension, Arteta appears to be comfortable with the offer despite the lack of long-term security that comes with the contract.

Arteta has struggled to flourish in the defensive midfielder role that Wenger deploys him in, with his natural instinct to push forward leaving Arsenal’s already shaky defence exposed on occasion. With the Basque-born midfielder set to be 34 by the time the new contract runs out, it could well be the final deal he signs with the Gunners.

He also appeared close to a summer exit with interest coming from Italian side Fiorentina, but a move failed to materialise even though the Gunners showed some interest in adding a defensive midfielder in the summer.

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Arteta picked up a calf injury in the draw with Spurs

The news coincides the revelations that Olivier Giroud is believed to have agreed a new £80,000-a-week contract extension that will keep him tied down to the club until 2018. Giroud, who turned 28 today, is currently sidelined until 2015 with a broken tibia but Wenger has shown relentless faith in the Frenchman and will reward him with a lucrative four-year contract.

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