Arsene Wenger insists progress is being made on ensuring both Theo Walcott and Aaron Ramsey sign new contracts to remain at Arsenal.
Walcott has been reduced to the role of a bit-part player this season but Wenger maintains he wants to keep hold of the England international who has been linked with a January move to Everton.
Ramsey, meanwhile, is currently enjoying a sensational run of form which has seen him register six assists and three goals in 11 games this term, and with less than 18 months remaining on his current deal Arsenal are keen to avoid a repeat of the scenario which has seen Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil able to run down their deals.
‘Yes, we deal with the situations,’ said Wenger. ‘It’s an ongoing process.
‘We always try behind the scenes, the negotiations are going on. Of course we only come with things when they are done, but most of the time it’s a year and a half – or more – of work.’
Referring specifically to Walcott, he added: ‘I want to keep the squad because we qualify now for the Europa League. We do not want to reduce the squad.
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‘We have the League Cup still, we have the FA Cup to come, the Premier League where we have a big fight to be in the top four. We don’t want to become weaker.
‘I have to consider the interest in the player, but dominant of that will be the interest of the club. If you can combine the two then even better, but first it’s what is important to the club.’