After “Paying a Heavy Price” Arsenal Star Has Been Giving Another Start Against City.

VermaelenThe 28-year-old’s first-team appearances have been limited so far this season due to the fine defensive form of  Laurent Koscielny and Per Mertesacker.

But with Koscielny sidelined through injury, Vermaelen has stepped in at the heart of the Gunners’ defence and is likely to continue there for Saturday’s Premier League clash with Manchester City.

The center back’s contract expires at the end of next season and despite his lack of playing time this term, Arsene Wenger still wants to offer him a new deal. Although Napoli have sounded out Arsenal about signing the out-of-favour defender with Rafa Benitez lining up the 28-year-old as the person to reinforce his backline.

“We know Thomas has paid a heavy price for having Laurent and Per who worked well together,” Wenger told Arsenal Player. “But he has an opportunity to show how good he is and I’m sure he will take it.”

Loan signing Kim Kallstrom made his debut for the club in Tuesday’s 2-2 draw at home to Swansea City and the Arsenal manager praised the Swede’s professionalism since he arrived in north London.

“He has an absolutely fantastic attitude,” Wenger said. “He’s a credit to the job because of his attitude, his focus and his determination. He works hard, he’s helpful and he’s marvellous.

“I’m convinced that he can be important for starting or coming on in the games because he has the experience, he has quality and his attitude is fantastic.

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