Following an impressive season in North London, Arsenal are set to extend the contract of Granit Xhaka until 2025.
Xhaka’s current contract will expire in the summer of 2024, though Arsenal retain an option to extend by a further year, with both sides willing to agree terms as soon as possible.
The 30-year-old signed an extension in August 2021 which ended speculations about his future despite genuine interest from German side, Hertha Berlin.
The Swiss midfielder has formed a solid partnership with Thomas Partey in the heart of Arsenal’s midfield, surpassing personal record in goal contributions with 9 in 36 matches, 4 goals and 5 assists, in all competitions.
According to reports, Mikel Arteta has also given his seal of approval for the deal to go ahead as he sees the midfielder as part of his plans for the next few years despite holding firm interest in West Ham’s Declan Rice.
Xhaka joined Arsenal in the summer of 2016 from Borussia Monchengladbach in a deal worth in excess of £30m and is closing in on 300 appearances for Arsenal in all competitions.
A new deal may, however, take longer than expected with star winger Bukayo Saka and defender William Saliba being given priority.
According to Fabrizio Romano on CaughtOffside…
“Despite reports, talks are not advanced now. Xhaka is next in the list after Martinelli, Saka and Saliba, but the Saka deal has to be finalized and also Saliba is still in negotiations, so it will take some time before getting Xhaka extension done. It will be discussed in the next months.”
With some commanding midfield displays, Xhaka has become one of the Gunners’ most improved players this season.
In an interview with Sky Sports following Arsenal’s dramatic 3-2 win over Bournemouth at the Emirates, the Switzerland international highlighted the changes brought in by Mikel Arteta which has helped improve his game.
“I mean, talent is not enough. With only talent, you cannot achieve something big. If you see us on the training pitch, day-by-day, how much we care, how much we work…everything starts [somewhere], Mikel changed even the food.
He changed a lot of food, our body fat dropped massively! They are small details but massive.”
Granit Xhaka also said:
“[Arteta] wants and demands a lot from us, but he wants as well that we demand a lot from each other. Every day. 100 per cent. Don’t drop anything because it can change, weekend by weekend. You lose two games, you are again second.”
Mikel Arteta, a big fan of the player, believes Xhaka is special.
“He’s a special person. He’s very straight, he’s very honest, he’s very loyal and he’s very passionate about what he does. So when you have someone like that you want to help him, you want to protect him, you want him to fulfil the talent he has.
He’s made some mistakes and he’s learnt from it, but he has always faced adversity and difficulty and he’s never run away from it. This is what all managers wants from their players.
You know you can count on him, he will fight and break walls for you. This is what we expect from our players.”