Tomas Rosicky contract extension: Arsenal not using midfielder to lure Petr Cech from Chelsea, insists Arsene Wenger

Gunners take up option to extend the Czech midfielder's contract

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The Independent Online

Czech midfielder Tomas Rosicky is set to stay at Arsenal next season, manager Arsene Wenger has confirmed.

The 34-year-old has been on the fringes of the squad this season, making only five starts in the Barclays Premier League.

However, Wenger insisted the former Borussia Dortmund playmaker remained integral to his plans for 2015-16.

Asked if he expected Rosicky to stay, Wenger replied: "Yes."

The Arsenal manager added: "We have taken up the option (of a one-year contract extension)."

Arsenal are likely to strengthen the squad in the summer, with Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech a reported target.

However, it remains to be seen whether the Blues will allow the veteran stopper to join one of their title rivals.

The close relationship between Cech and Rosicky is also said to be a factor in any potential £10million deal.

Wenger, however, insisted such issues should play no part in any transfer.

"Tomas Rosicky is not involved in the transfer market at all, he will be with us next season and we do not use the players for that," the Arsenal boss said.

"Most of the time it is the players who want to join you who come in. Sometimes they might call each other, but we do not get the players to interfere with that."

Tomas-Rosicky.jpg
Tomas Rosicky

 

Arsenal will be out to sign off from their Premier League season with a return to winning ways against West Brom on Sunday, and so take some momentum into the FA Cup final.

Wenger's men laboured through a goalless draw at home to Sunderland on Wednesday night, which was enough to keep the Mackems up and all but secured third place for the Gunners.

"We have fought very hard to directly qualify for the Champions League and we want to get over the line and finish the job, which we couldn't do on Wednesday night. We want to do it in a convincing way on Sunday," said Wenger, whose side have not scored at home for three games.

Arsenal forward Danny Welbeck has been troubled a painful knee injury which could put him in a race against time to be fit for both the FA Cup final against Aston Villa on May 30 and also international duty with England in June.

"Danny will go out today for the first time, we have to wait for the response to that to know if he responds in a positive way. He could be fit very quickly," said Wenger.

"There is a good chance that he will be available for England, however it is difficult to know.

"But certainly if he is not available for the FA Cup final, I can't see him being competitive enough for England."

 

Midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain was not included in the England squad named on Thursday as he continues to recover from first an inflamed groin and then hamstring problem which sidelined him since early March.

"It is not impossible (to make the FA Cup final) because he starts full training today. We will see how he responds to that," said Wenger.

"The difference (in not being selected for England) is that Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has not played in any competition for a long time. That lack of competition takes some time to come back to a good competitive level.

"I didn't tell him (England manager Roy Hodgson) not to pick Oxlade-Chamberlain. He has looked when he played his last game and has then decided."

Wenger added: "Danny Welbeck is not out for a long time and he has nothing at all on any scan, just bone bruising on his knee, that is just the pain that will decide if he is fit or not."

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