Per Mertesacker and Tomas Rosicky sign Arsenal contracts - but future of Bacary Sagna thrown into doubt

Mertesacker had a year left on his old contract while Rosicky was free to leave this summer but both have committed their future to the Gunners

Arsenal have announced that defender Per Mertesacker and midfielder Tomas Rosicky have both signed new contracts to keep them at the north London club, although the future of Bacary Sagna has been thrown into even further doubt as a new deal was not announced for the right-back.

Mertesacker has become an integral figure in the Gunners defence, with the Germany international forming a strong partnership with fellow centre-back Laurent Koscielny. Having joined Arsenal in 2011, Mertesacker was contracted until the end of next season, but fans will be delighted that he has elected to extend his deal beyond the summer of 2015.

Rosicky meanwhile has been rewarded for his hard work and recent impressive form, having started and finished a sublime goal in the 4-1 victory over Sunderland two weekends’ ago.

 

The Czech Republic captain endured an injury-hit start to his Gunners career after joining the club in 2006 following the World Cup in Germany, but has gone on to become a key part of Arsene Wenger’s plans, with the Arsenal manager showing a preference to starting Rosicky in the Gunners’ biggest matches.

Despite Rosicky entering the latter years of his contract – the midfielder turns 34 in October this year – Wenger has shown a desire to keep him at the Emirates, with his previous contract expiring at the end of this season.

“We are delighted that Mertesacker and Rosicky have committed their futures to the club,Wenger told the club’s official website.

“They are players of exceptional quality and experience, and have consistently proven themselves at the highest level. There is a great feeling of togetherness and belief in the group and this news will only help to strengthen this further.”

Bendtner unhappy with lack of first-team action

Mertesacker provides the Arsenal squad with a wealth of experience, having made 95 appearances for Germany since making his international debut in 2004. The 6ft 6in defender revealed that he feels “a real Gunner” and stressed his proudness at being tied down to the club until 2017.

“It was easy for me to commit myself to the club,” Mertesacker said.

“I have been here for two-and-a-half great years and feel I have great support from everyone at the club and the fans. I'm really looking forward to having more years coming up with this fantastic club. We have a great team here and we all want to do our best to win trophies.

Arsenal's title charge always ends in February and March

“I have become a real Gunner...I am truly thankful to the club and all the supporters for the time I have had here so far. And today I am deeply proud to have extended my contract with Arsenal. I'm proud to be a Gunner.”

Mertesacker even posted a picture on his official Twitter account of him as a young boy wearing an Arsenal shirt, captioned: “ As a young boy and now-very proud to be a gunner! Thanks fans for your support. Happy to have extended with @Arsenal”

Rosicky also stressed his happiness at extending his contract by an additional two years, and despite the addition this season of Mesut Ozil plus the rapid improvement of Aaron Ramsey, Rosicky has gone on to make 27 appearances already this season when it did look first-team opportunities could pass him by this season.

“I'm very happy that I'm staying at the club,” Rosicky said. “ I'm proud that I'm still here after a long time and that it still continues. I'm glad I'm here at Arsenal and we're all trying our best to win trophies for the club and our supporters.

“Ever since I arrived at Arsenal, I have always felt that I'm at the right place where I want to be. I still feel this way now and I'm proud that after such a long time I'm still here and will continue. One big factor is that I want to win the league with Arsenal.”

Nzonzi jibes Arsenal: 'They don't like it when you kick them'

The news does make Sagna’s exit appear much more likely this summer though with the Frenchman’s contract expiring at the end of the season. Arsenal have shown a preference in the past to announce multiple new contracts at the same time – last season’s announcement of five new deals for home-grown stars Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Jack Wilshere, Aaron Ramsey, Kieran Gibbs and Carl Jenkinson is a prime example – but it is believed that talks remain at a stalemate over Sagna’s future.

Another whose future remains unclear is Wenger himself. The 64-year-old is expected to take his reign at the club into an 18th year, though many thought an announcement over a contract extension was due weeks ago.

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones
Theme parks continue to draw in thrill-seekers despite the risks - so why are we so addicted?

Why are we addicted to theme parks?

Now that Banksy has unveiled his own dystopian version, Christopher Beanland considers the ups and downs of our endless quest for amusement
Tourism in Iran: The country will soon be opening up again after years of isolation

Iran is opening up again to tourists

After years of isolation, Iran is reopening its embassies abroad. Soon, there'll be the chance for the adventurous to holiday there
10 best PS4 games

10 best PS4 games

Can’t wait for the new round of blockbusters due out this autumn? We played through last year’s offering
Transfer window: Ten things we learnt

Ten things we learnt from the transfer window

Record-breaking spending shows FFP restraint no longer applies
Migrant crisis: UN official Philippe Douste-Blazy reveals the harrowing sights he encountered among refugees arriving on Lampedusa

‘Can we really just turn away?’

Dead bodies, men drowning, women miscarrying – a senior UN figure on the horrors he has witnessed among migrants arriving on Lampedusa, and urges politicians not to underestimate our caring nature
Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger as Isis ravages centuries of history

Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger...

... and not just because of Isis vandalism
Girl on a Plane: An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack

Girl on a Plane

An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack
Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

The author of 'The Day of the Jackal' has revealed he spied for MI6 while a foreign correspondent