After months of speculation, Arsenal look set to tie highly-rated striker Folarin Balogun down to a new contract.
According to a report by the Daily Mail, Balogun is “on the verge” of committing his future to the north London club and bringing an end to a turbulent few months for himself, with his future having been attracting plenty of speculation.
The 19-year-old, who was linked with a move to both Brentford and Sheffield United last summer, is out-of-contract at the Emirates Stadium at the end of this season and his situation has put a whole host of clubs on alert, both in England and abroad.
However, those who were interested in landing his signature are now set to miss out, with the striker very close to putting pen to paper on a new contract in north London. According to the report, a “few final details” need sorting, but Mikel Arteta has managed to convince the 19-year-old, who has racked up five first-team appearances this season, to commit his future to the club.
Although first-team opportunities have proven to be fairly limited for the youngster, he is held in very high regard by the Gunners, so much so that many consider him as the most promising player emerging from the club’s academy.
He has scored eight goals in the Premier league 2 this season, which is an impressive tally considering that he does not even turn 20-years-old until July.
Now, with the striker destined to sign a new deal, he will be looking to kick-on, take that next step in his development and cement himself in Arteta’s first-team plans next season.
The Gunners have been desperate to tie the New York-born frontman down to a new deal for several months, meaning this breakthrough will ease the pressure the club has been feeling from the supporters, who have been desperate to see the north London outfit ensure Balogun’s long-term future lies at the Emirates Stadium.
The summer transfer window is just around the corner.
And the rumour mill is already starting to pick up speed.
Arsenal will not have a huge amount of money to spend, but Mikel Arteta will be hoping to make a number of moves, with loanee Martin Odegaard high up the list of priorities to bring in on a permanent deal.
But who would you sign? Get involved in our transfer window debate here.
With the striker now poised to sign a new deal in north London, it will tick another task off of Edu’s to-do list, certainly as far as the Gunners’ attacking ranks are concerned. Whilst Balogun is coming towards the end of his deal, Alexandre Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah are very close to entering the final 12 months of their respective contracts.
The duo are out-of-contract at the end of the 2021/22 season, meaning they could be lost in cut-price deals or even on a free transfer.
However, with Balogun now close to signing a new deal, Arsenal may not be in such a rush to sort the futures of the aforementioned duo.
In the five first-team appearances Balogun has made this season, he has chipped in with two goals, both of which have come in the UEFA Europa League.