Vermaelen signs new Arsenal deal

Arsenal defender Thomas Vermaelen has signed a new contract at the club that will keep him in North London until 2015.

The Belgium international joined The Gunners from Ajax back in 2009, and instantly impressed with excellent defensive displays and contributing to the side’s goal tally in his first campaign in England.

The vice-captain has had an injury prone last year, but has agreed to prolong his stay with Arsene Wenger’s men.

“I am really happy to have signed a new contract with Arsenal. I always had the intention to stay here,” he told the club’s official website.

“I feel there is a big belief in me from the club, from the boss and from the fans and that is one of the reasons why I stayed.

“Arsenal is a fantastic club. We have great supporters, we’re doing well financially and we are playing with some quality young players now and they will develop, which is very good for the future,” he concluded.

Boss Wenger is also delighted that the centre half has decided to commit to the Emirates’ outfit, and feels the defender can play a big part in Arsenal’s future hopes for success.

“We are absolutely delighted that Thomas has signed a new long-term contract,” the French coach stated.

“Our plan is always to sign top quality players and with Thomas extending his contract, we have done just that.

“Thomas is a special player, who has always made a huge contribution on the pitch and we are looking forward to him being a part of our future at Arsenal Football Club,” he stated.

The news will bolster Arsenal amid constant rumours over their best players leaving the club, and Wenger’s next focus will be in convincing star attacker Robin van Persie to sign on the dotted line, as his current deal runs out in June 2013.

By Gareth McKnight