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Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker future at the Emirates has been thrown into doubt as Wenger delays contract talks.
The German is on the verge of entering into the last year of his contract at the Emirates and Wenger is not prepared to open talks with the defender on a new deal yet.
According to the times via the Daily Star, Wenger wants to keep a close watch on the defender next season before offering him a new deal. It is claimed that Wenger is concerned about the player’s form and fitness and is keen to see how the will player’s perform next term.
Mertesacker recently lost his place in the first team to Gabriel Paulista and the report claims Arsenal could strengthen their defense this summer which could push in further down the pecking order.
Mertesacker stood in as captain for Mikel Arteta for the majority of this season but the German may not have that privilege next term as Wenger is prepared to offload Arteta and find a permanent skipper for the team. With Mertesacker’s place in the starting xi in serious doubts, Wenger is interested in making a regular figure in his starting xi the new captain and Petr Cech is reportedly in line to take over.
Mertesacker joined Arsenal from Werder Bremen in 2011 for £8m and has made over 140 appearances for the team since 2011.
However, the likes of Santi Cazorla, Mesut Ozil, Alexis Sanchez and Jack Wilshere are expected to be offered new deals as Wenger prepares for next season.