Arsenal are reportedly stalling on a new deal for vice-captain Per Mertesacker even though he only has a little over 12 months remaining on his current deal.

The report, which appeared in the London Evening Standard, said that the Gunners are delaying and that’s about all the information they had available so it’s hard to know how much weight should be given to the story.

Mertesacker has clearly fallen down the pecking order, behind Laurent Koscielny and Gabriel, in recent weeks.

He has still made 21 league appearances this season and many fans feel more secure with him in the side as Gabriel looks to find himself.

31, and not very fast to begin with, it’s not unimaginable that Per could be deemed surplus to requirements sooner rather than later, but would they let him go in the summer as is being suggested by some?

Possibly.

Arsenal may also lose Mikel Arteta and Tomas Rosicky who are out of contract, as is Mathieu Flamini. Say what you like about the Frenchman on the pitch, but losing those three takes a wealth of experience with them when they go.

Can Arsene Wenger afford to lose Per’s as well?

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