Rob Holding set to avoid Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal cull with 25-year-old defender ‘close to signing new long-term contract’, ending speculation of him leaving on loan this month
- Arsenal defender Rob Holding looks set to be rewarded with a long-term deal
- The 25-year-old, signed from Bolton in 2016, has been a key performer this year
- Holding will pen his new contract soon and stay at the club, the Telegraph claim
- The centre back has made 17 appearances so far during Arsenal’s mixed season
Arsenal defender Rob Holding is set to sign a new long-term contract with the club after impressing this season, according to reports.
The 25-year-old, signed from Bolton for £2million in 2016, has been forced into a regular first-team spot this campaign as part of Mikel Arteta’s unsettled backline.
And, despite reports linking him to a loan move away this month, The Telegraph claim Holding will stay at the Emirates and avoid the expected mass culling.
Arsenal defender Rob Holding is reportedly set so sign a new long-term contract at the club
It is believed a number of Premier League clubs were targeting Holding with a view to signing him on a temporary basis.
It is now more likely that the centre back stays and fights for his place, however.
Having made 17 appearances across all competitions so far this term, Holding has emerged as a key member of Arteta’s squad.
Holding, signed from Bolton for £2m in 2016, has emerged as a first-team regular this season
His current contract still has two seasons left to run but, as reported, an extension appears to be edging closer.
Newcastle were among the sides that registered an interest in Holding in the summer although a potential deal failed to materialise for the former Bury loanee.
The same outlet also believe Steve Bruce remains on the hunt for short-term options during the winter window, but have ruled out Holding heading to St James’ Park.
Holding started, and caught the eye, in Arsenal’s recent consecutive victories over Chelsea and Brighton.
Mikel Arteta (left) has struggled to field a settled back four with Arsenal dogged by injuries and absences his season; Holding (right) looks set to be rewarded for impressing recently
It is likely he will continue to be handed plenty of first-team opportunities due to Arteta’s looming axe.
The club’s head coach wants a sizeable exodus to help trim down his ranks and a number of defenders may soon find themselves shipped out.
Sead Kolasinac has joined struggling Schalke on loan in the Bundesliga in Arsenal’s first departure this month – and Shkodran Mustafi, Calum Chambers and Sokratis Papastathopoulos are also understood to be on the chopping block.
William Saliba’s future remains unclear, too, with the summer signing yet to feature for the first-team.
THE ARSENAL EXODUS
As Mikel Arteta looks to both trim his Arsenal squad and lighten the financial constraints of the wage bill, the following could be set to depart:
Sead Kolasinac – Out of favour, reduced to cup appearances
Shkodran Mustafi – Seemingly not rated by Arteta or the fanbase
Calum Chambers – Stuggled for opportunities since Gabriel’s arrival
William Saliba – Still yet to cut his teeth fully in English football
Sokratis Papastathopoulos – Aging star deemed surplus by Arteta
Mesut Ozil – Exiled by the club and not included in Premier League or European squad selection
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