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Arsene Wenger has said he’s willing to keep his contract rebels at the club and risk losing them for free in 12 months, even if it costs Arsenal £200m.
According to the Daily Mail, the Gunners manager has said the board are behind his decision to keep the likes of Alexis Sanchez, Mesut Ozil and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain for another season, despite the trio having just 12 months left on their respective deals.
“The board is behind me on that. (Keeping them) It is a financial sacrifice. It is a sacrifice that you have to calculate, how much it costs,” admitted Wenger. “After that, all the financial implications, for me, is less important. But at the end of the day you have to afford it as well.”
The report suggests it could cost Arsenal £200m if they fail to cash in on their stars this summer, with Alexis worth in excess of £50m, plus his wages of around £6m-per-year. Mesut Ozil was valued at around £42m in May. He’s said to be on similar wages to Alexis.
This summer, Oxlade-Chamberlain has been linked with a £35m move away from Arsenal. His wages are closer to £3.4m. And then there’s Jack Wilshere, Santi Cazorla, Kieran Gibbs, Joel Campbell, Carl Jenkinson and Matt Macey all currently eating up the wage bill and with a year left on their deals.
The sooner Arsenal can cut the deadwood from the side, the better. But currently, Wenger risks losing the club around £200m if he keeps his players until the end of their respective contracts.