Wright tells Arsenal to put ‘all the eggs in basket’ for Saliba

Mikel Arteta goes ‘back to basics’ as Arsenal earn vital win at Leicester

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Ian Wright has urged Arsenal to “put all of their eggs in one basket” and secure the long-term future of William Saliba at the club. The French defender has proved to be a revelation under Mikel Arteta this season and has played a key role in their push towards challenging for the club’s first Premier League title in 19 years.

The Gunners have begun to prioritise tying down their most important prospects to new contracts, with Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli crucially choosing to extend their Arsenal contracts with new five-year deals.

The club has also followed that up by securing academy product Myles Lewis-Skelly to a new contract that will see him stay at the club for a further two years. Ethan Nwaneri, the club’s youngest-ever appearance maker in the Premier League at the age of 15, is thought to be high on the list of their next players to renew.

But Wright has made a plea to the club to prioritise locking down Saliba’s new contract as the 21-year-old has only 14 months left to run on his current agreement.

“You look at him [Saliba] now, the way he has started the season and the way he plays, It’s fantastic. He’s a full international off the back of it,” Wright told, as quoted by The Mirror.

“People [are] talking about Saka signing a new deal, and we know how much we need Saka. I don’t think there was any real problems with that happening because of his connection with the club. But I think all the eggs need to go in the Saliba basket. We have got to make sure we keep this guy.”

Saliba joined the north London club in a £27million transfer from Saint-Etienne in 2019 while Unai Emery was in charge.

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But he did not make his debut until the start of the 2022-23 season when he was thrown straight into the starting XI on the opening day under Mikel Arteta, and has since started every game for Arsenal.

The club have already exercised the option to extend Saliba’s contract by a further year to June 2024, but that delay will mean little if they cannot agree new terms with the defender on a fresh deal.

Saliba confirmed the two parties remain in talks to find an agreement and insisted he is “so happy” at the club after finally locking down a regular first-team place, having spent the first three seasons at the club out on loan.

“I am so happy here,” Saliba said. “The club is speaking with my agent and me, the only thing I can do is [focus on my football]. I am so happy here.”

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