According to a report in the Daily Mail, Arsenal have opened talks with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain over a contract extension.

The 23-year-old midfielder has improved significantly this season and performances recently have earned him plaudits from both supporters and critics. Many were uncertain as to whether he’d fulfil his full potential at the club after a range of troublesome injuries hindered his development in recent seasons.

Liverpool and both Manchester clubs are said to be monitoring the Englishman’s contract situation, especially as he is set to go into his final year of the existing contract in north London.

Alex though, has justified his desire to play more regularly with consistent performances in a number of different positions when asked to feature for the team.

Right-back, right wing-back, central midfield and on either wing, Alex has quietly worked hard to sustain a high level of performance on a weekly basis. During a disappointing campaign for the Gunners, The Ox has been one of few highlights.

Given the high weekly wages that are currently handed out, especially by the best clubs in England’s top flight, it’s a genuine surprise that Oxlade-Chamberlain is reportedly on £65,000-a-week. In comparison, Mathieu Debuchy, Lucas Perez (both £70k) and Aaron Ramsey (£110k) all earn more. Other reports put the Ox on £50kpw with this new deal set to double his wages to £100k.

The Ox was previously spoke about wanting more playing time and at 23-years-old, he’s right to. He’s no longer at the age where he’s regarded a prospect for the future and fitness permitting, could prove to be a shining light for Arsenal going forward.

The sooner his contract is extended, the better.