Arsene Wenger confirmed today that club captain Per Mertesacker has signed a one-year contract extension with the Gunners but the news hasn’t gone down too well.
Mertesacker, who took the armband following Mikel Arteta’s retirement last summer, is yet to feature for Arsenal this season due to a long-term injury and, despite now just being weeks away from a return, he’ll find opportunities limited.
BREAKING NEWS: Arsene Wenger says captain Per Mertesacker has signed one-year contract extension. #SSNHQ
— Sky Sports News HQ (@SkySportsNewsHQ) January 19, 2017
The summer signing of Shkodran Mustafi has increased the depth Arsenal have at the heart of defence, with the Gunners also boasting Laurent Koscielny, Rob Holding and Gabriel Paulista- whilst Calum Chambers has impressed on-loan at Middlesbrough.
Therefore, Arsenal’s decision to extend the contract of the 31-year-old has baffled many but it’s likely the option was taken due to Mertesacker’s impact off the field, which is similar to the boost that Arteta provided previously.
Nevertheless, fans on social media were quick to make their concerns clear and it’s obvious that many don’t value the World Cup winner that highly.
Not having this good to keep mertesacker around the club garbarge. He is a footballer. Will the squad lack anything if he leaves? Doubt it.
— Sam.sports (@Samsports094) January 19, 2017
— Marlon~Mwenda (@marlon_mwenda) January 19, 2017
A lot of #AFC fans frustrated with Mertesacker's cont. ext. are completely overlooking his role as captain and the experience he brings
— Jay Harris (@jaydmharris) January 19, 2017
Wenger is too loyal to players. Mertesacker is a great guy to have at the club but offers little on the pitch now.
— Mase (@MaseTMT) January 19, 2017
Rewarding deadwood yet again. Out for 6 months and should be dumped on the scrapheap. Wenger never learns. #Mertesacker
— bfscru (@BelfastCrusader) January 19, 2017
Given Mustafi and Koscielny are our first choice defensive pairing, I am comfortable with having Gabriel, Holding & Mertesacker as back-up.
— FK³ (@fkhanage) January 19, 2017
Giving Mertesacker a contract extension is so pointless, just like the one they gave to Arteta.
— Jon (@Jonnyarsenal) January 19, 2017
Really? Mertesacker? Hope he's slashed his wages so we can give them to important players like Ozil and Sanchez https://t.co/pwHpg4Pe2Z
— Lewis Welch (@WelchLewis) January 19, 2017
Arsenal just announced they are donating a years salary to Per Mertesacker, waste of time and money
— Ryan (@RyanC03) January 19, 2017
Really did think we'd start to phase Mertesacker out but to give him another deal, Arsene's too loyal sometimes
— Ian Heward (@ianh_84) January 19, 2017
Mertesacker signing a new contract is really good news for us as he is one of the leaders at the back and will help youngster to develop
— Indiana Bönes (@Cechque) January 19, 2017
— Footballing Hero (@FootballingHero) January 19, 2017
I wanna know why Mertesacker got an extension. He's of no damn use to the club anymore
— alex berbatov (@beansone_) January 19, 2017