Pablo Mari wants to seal a permanent move to Arsenal, if football ever becomes a thing again, but that’s not entirely unexpected.
Signed in January on loan with an option to buy and compared favourably with Per Mertesacker, the 26-year-old managed to play just 180 minutes before the apocalypse struck.
With Arsenal unable to force players out of contract to stay, even if the season has not finished, Mari’s future is perhaps not quite as clear as it might have been had we seen him play regularly.
That being said, Arsenal wanted to buy him permanently in January but finances dictated otherwise.
Quite what Stan’s dollar will be telling him come the summer, we can only guess.
“I have a lot of things to learn but I think my football can be really good with the Arsenal,” Mari told Sky Sports.
“I hope the club and I can go at the end (of the season) with good things to do the permanent transfer. We will see what happens because at the moment with the virus it is difficult.
“He [Mikel Arteta] has done really well so far. I’m really happy to work with him,” he added.
“He has helped me with my weaknesses and improved the strengths. I hope I can work with him a lot of years.”
It has been reported that Arsenal could extend their loanee contracts past June 30th on a week-by-week basis, if the season goes on beyond that date which it will surely do now.
Writing for The Athletic, David Ornstein reported that out-of-contract players would be able to sign weekly extensions should the football season go on into July. The FA and FIFA would be willing to grant special dispensation in those circumstances.
Loanees Dani Ceballos, Pablo Mari and Cedric Soares would need short-term extensions, assuming the Gunners don’t sign any or all of them permanently on July 1st.
Matt Macey is also out of contract this summer.