Arsenal tried to sell Eddie Nketiah during the summer and his contract expires next season but Mikel Arteta is keen for the goalscorer to stay at the club.
Eddie Nketiah could have been a Crystal Palace player this season but, despite Arsenal agreeing terms with the Eagles, Eddie could not and so he stayed at the club.
Getting a start against Leeds United and rewarding that trust with the goal that sealed the win for Arsenal to take them to the quarter-finals, Arteta was asked after the game about Nketiah’s future.
“I have no doubts about what he can offer,” Arteta said.
“Whatever you throw at him, he wants more, and demands more of himself, and he’s another one that I am delighted to see the performance and for him to score the goal and help the team, because he totally deserves it.
“But there’s a lot of players who play in that position, and with a personal situation [with his contract running down], but I try to leave that aside and try to [reward him] because he deserves it.
“We had a situation in the summer that we tried to resolve and we couldn’t either way.
“The contract situation is more and more common in football, from where we are coming from with Covid and a lot of issues we have to resolve. I have full belief that he is going to be a top player and hopefully at Arsenal.
“I am happy to have him in the team. He is our player and I consider him and regard him really highly, and from my side I want him to stay.”
If that wasn’t true there was no need for Arteta to add the last bit about wanting Nketiah to say.
He’d offered enough platitudes in his previous sentences.
Nketiah now has 15 goals (and one assist) in his 67 Arsenal games, although those numbers don’t tell the story of a young player only playing a bit-part role.
In the League Cup, where he usually starts, he has a total of seven goals in eight games for both Arsenal and Leeds, with two in two for his former loan club and five in six for Arsenal.