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Arsenal ink five players to new deals; Galliani confirms Pato bid

Arsenal Football Club have signed the likes of Aaron Ramsey, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Carl Jenkinson, Jack Wilshere and Kieran Gibbs to long-term contracts amid Arsene Wenger’s latest comments about the club becoming more ‘convincing’ with regards to transfers and contracts in the upcoming period, Sky Sports understands.

All five of the aforementioned players have enjoyed first-team spells at the Emirates Stadium this season, with Kieran Gibbs the oldest amongst the youngsters at 23 years of age and Oxlade-Chamberlain the youngest at just 19.

Keeping a core group of young British players will help the Gunners establish a sense of stability at the Emirates, according to Wenger.

“We are delighted that these five young players have all signed new long-term contracts,” revealed Wenger.

“The plan is to build a team around a strong basis of young players, in order to get them to develop their talent at the club.

“Jack is certainly the best known, the leader of this group – but the other four players are exceptional footballers, and we’re very happy that we could conclude their new deals at the same time.

“I’m a strong believer in stability and I believe when you have a core of British players, it’s always easier to keep them together and that’s what we’ll try to achieve going forward.”

After suffering a nightmare defeat against League Two side Bradford City at Valley Parade last Tuesday, Arsenal have recovered to enjoy a fantastic week this time around, highlighted by their 5-2 win over Reading at the Madejski and topped off by the long-term signings of Gibbs, Jenkinson, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ramsey and Wilshere.

Next up for Arsenal: Wigan Athletic at the weekend.

With the Latics struggling to keep the ball out of the back of their own net at the moment, expect a high-scoring, rampant Arsenal side on Saturday, with the Gunners making it three wins out of three matches for the first time in the English Premier League this term.

Galliani confirms Pato bid

AC Milan vice-president Adriano Galliani has confirmed the Rossoneri have received a bid from an unnamed club for out-of-favour Brazil international striker Alexandre Pato, Sky Sports reports.

According to the Brazilian and Italian media, Pato is reportedly attracting interest from Club World Cup champions Corinthians ahead of the January transfer window, while compatriot and Milan team-mate Robinho has been linked with a return to his boyhood club Santos FC.

“Milan have received an offer for Pato,” Galliani told the Corriere dello Sport.

“Meanwhile, I am doing everything in my power to keep Robinho, I don’t know if I will succeed, but I will use all my powers of persuasion.”

Milan have had a massive exodus of star power since the summer, with the likes of Antonio Cassano, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Thiago Silva having left the San Siro for pastures new.

Although Pato and Robinho have not been in form this season, their potential departures could send the wrong message to Milan’s players and supporters, unless of course the club uses the resulting funds to bring in new talent.

Are Milan trying to free up the money required to lure Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli back to the San Siro? Possibly, but only time will tell.

Wed 19 December, 2012
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