Trio yet to open talks with Arsenal, could leave in 18 months

Arsenal are yet to open negotiations regarding a new contract for three England internationals in North London, The Evening Standatd reports.

What’s the word?

Arsenal are yet to start contract negotiations with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Kieran Gibbs and Jack Wilshere, despite the fact that all three of the England internationals see their deals at the Emirates Stadium expire in 18 months.

Arsene Wenger has been busy in recent weeks to secure the likes of Francis Coquelin, Laurent Koscielny, Olivier Giroud and even forgotten-man Per Mertesacker down to new deals, but the home-grown trio have been left in the dark.

The most high-profile of the trio, Jack Wilshere, faces a huge year in 2017 to get his career back-on-track after numerous injury problems but has impressed in the first-half of his season on-loan with Bournemouth.

Elsewhere, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has found form this season for the Gunners, which you’d expect to warrant a new deal, whilst Kieran Gibbs remains as the long-term option for the left-back spot as Nacho Monreal is declining in ability and ageing fast.

Will they sign?

It’s difficult to predict what Wenger’s plan is, as he’s been busy with negotiations recently, but you’d expect Arsenal will not allow all three players to leave. However, an exit is possible for one-or-two men; most likely Wilshere or Oxlade-Chamberlain.

Arsene Wenger is reported to be keen on keeping all three players at Arsenal but Wilshere is unlikely to extend until the summer, when he can assess his options amongst a squad that boasts a wealth of midfield talent, whilst Oxlade-Chamberlain is also waiting to see what the season holds.

With Olivier Giroud returning to form and Alexis Sanchez thus occupying a wide position, Oxlade-Chamberlain has been left to battle it out with Alex Iwobi and Theo Walcott for a starting spot, with the recent return of Danny Welbeck from injury and the rise of summer-signing Lucas Perez providing increased competition.

Gibbs has spent 13 years at Arsenal and would prefer to stay but, now 27, he needs regular football and will have to assess the situation in the second-half of the campaign, as he’s made just five Premier League appearances this term.