Arsenal have won the race to keep highly-rated star, Chuba Akpom, in the long-term with the 19-year old striker now putting pen to paper on a four-year deal.
The Arsenal manager made the confirmation as part of his declared satisfaction with the business done during the concluded January transfer window.
“I am very happy because for me the target during this transfer window was on two fronts,” Wenger said on Friday.
“The first was to get a defender in and we did that.
“The second was also to extend the contracts of Coquelin and Akpom. That’s what I did as well so we are very happy with what we did.”
Akpom also confirmed this too via his twitter feed saying:
Delighted to have signed a new deal with @Arsenal. Lots of hard work to come but very excited about the future #AFC
The exit had looked like next reach for the 19-year old as there had been no shortage of clubs presenting a pre-contract agreement for him, being that he is in the final months of his current deal. A host of foreign as well as Premier League rivals had been rumoured with interest in the bright youngster but the offer of a new deal all but puts all of that to bed now.
Wigan reportedly made a deadline day approach for him but Wenger does not want the young promising forward to go anywhere this season, a fact proven not just by the recent minutes given him in the last FA Cup and League games but also by lending three other more experienced forwards out this winter. Podolski, Campbell and Yaya Sanogo have all been allowed to get more football opportunities at other places for the next six months but with FA Cup, Champions League and top four battles still ahead, Wenger has kept Akpom in the team as a sign of his confidence in him to forge an Arsenal career without having to go on another loan.
Akpom has been limited to starts from the bench so far but there has been enough flashes of his brilliance in the few outings to suggest he is one that should not be let go of so easily. He did well to latch on to Ramsey’s pass and earn a penalty from Brad Guzan and nearly finished off a goal of his own in the final stages.
If given more opportunities, he could benefit from the immense creative and attacking potential in the Arsenal first team, where his pace and movement could compliment the inventiveness of players like Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez. Fellow speedstars in Walcott and Welbeck can also be made to pair with him to bring out the best of his killer instincts.
Chuba looks a part of a uniquely talented group of exciting young players in the team and while he may be behind Hector Bellerin and Calum Chambers in the order, he does have the stuff of a future star written all over him and with the right attitude towards improving himself and proving his quality, Arsenal fans may see the explosion of an exciting generation that will fulfill their fantasies.
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