Mikel Arteta sends message to Eddie Nketiah over Arsenal future

Eddie Nketiah scored his second goal of the season for Arsenal on Tuesday night (Picture: Getty Images)

Mikel Arteta has made it clear that he wants Eddie Nketiah to sign a new contract at Arsenal, with the striker’s current deal expiring at the end of the season.

The 22-year-old started and scored in the 2-0 win over Leeds United in the Carabao Cup on Tuesday night, helping the Gunners book their spot in the quarter-finals of the competition.

Nketiah is yet to feature in the Premier League this season, or even make the bench in the league, but he has been making the most of his appearances in the League Cup, scoring in both of them.

The forward came close to leaving the club in the summer, with Crystal Palace interested in signing him, but the move collapsed and now it looks likely that he will leave the Emirates on a free transfer at the end of the season.

However, Arteta says he wants to keep hold of Nketiah and believes he has a very bright future at the club.

‘We had a situation in the summer that we tried to resolve and we couldn’t either way,’ explained Arteta after the win over Leeds. ‘That’s the contract situation.

‘It’s more and more common in football with where we are coming from with COVID and a lot of the issues that we have to resolve. I have full belief that he’s going to be a top, top player and hopefully at Arsenal.

‘I’m so happy to have him in the team. He’s our player and I consider him and regard him really highly. From my side I want him to stay.’

Nketiah rounded off Arsenal’s 2-0 win at the Emirates, booking a place in the Carabao Cup quarter-finals (Picture: Getty Images)

The likes of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Alexandra Lacazette, Gabriel Martinelli and even Folarin Balogun have been ahead of Nketiah in the pecking order for Arsenal so far this season, while Arteta also hinted at an off-field issue that he has been dealing with.

‘I have no doubt about what he can offer,’ said the Arsenal boss. ‘Whatever you throw at him he wants more, he demands more from himself.

‘Another one I’m delighted to see the performance from that he had to score the goal and help the team because he totally deserved it. He’s got a lot of players as well that they play in that position and he’s got a personal situation, but I try to leave that aside and try to give him what he deserves.’

Arsenal took their unbeaten run to seven games with the win on Tuesday night and now travel to Leicester City in the Premier League on Saturday afternoon.

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