Campbell set to sign one-year deal at Arsenal
By Jonny Payne
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger aims to keep veteran defender Sol Campbell at the club until 2011 according to reports in today’s press.
The 35 year-old has settled back into Premier League football remarkably well after a disastrous spell at League Two Notts County earlier in the season and he looks to have impressed enough to have been offered a new one-year deal according to The Times.
Originally recruited as a squad member, Campbell has found himself playing more football than both he and his manager Arsene Wenger would have expected due to injuries to Thomas Vermaelen and William Gallas during the second half of the season and the continuing recovery of third-choice centre-back Johan Djourou.
Campbell’s commanding displays have even seen the former Portsmouth and Tottenham player touted as the answer to his country’s injury problems ahead of the World Cup in June. Campbell said yesterday:
“My name has definitely moved up the list for sure. If I get a chance and he [Fabio Capello] gives me the nod then I’ll definitely take it and give my all.
“I’ve always done that for my country. I’m experienced, Im playing well, and I’m focused and ready. But if it doesn’t happen then I’ll accept it and go on playing domestic football.”
Campbell has been paid a reported £20,000 per week since rejoining the Gunners, a third of some of his team-mates but negotiations over a wage increase are allegedly taking place ahead of any new deal being put in place.
With Phillipe Senderos set to leave the club this summer and the futures of William Gallas and Mikael Silvestre uncertain due to the Frenchmen being out of contract, the signing of Campbell will help to ease fear surrounding Arsenal’s defensive fragility.
Arsenal are expected to do everything they can to keep Gallas on board, but with Campbell staying at the Emirates, it may signal the departure of Silvestre, whose recent performances in the heart of the defence have been somewhat overshadowed by the burly Englishman.
If Campbell signs, do Arsenal still need another defender? Have your say below:
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