Granit Xhaka is to be offered a new contract by Arsenal.
The Swiss international captain had seemed on the verge of joining Roma, and had already agreed personal terms with the Serie A club.
However, they refused to meet Arsenal’s valuation of the player and, despite weeks of negotiation no agreement between the two clubs could be reached.
And now Xhaka, who still has two years left on his current deal in North London, has returned to training with the Gunners.
Th decision to offer a new contact to a player who was half out of the door seems strange but it is being done in part to protect his value. Too often in the past few years, players have been allowed to run down their contracts at the Emirates and leave for free, costing the club millions in lost transfer fees.
And it may also be a negotiating tactic -a lever to get Roam to increase their bid whilst there is still time.
Andy is an exiled English football fan living in Cyprus. He loves all sports but football is his abiding passion, and he still has dreams every now and then about scoring the winning goal in a Wembley Cup Final, even though his playing days are long gone. He follows most major leagues, across Europe at least, and has a favoured team in each. When he’s not watching, listening, reading or downloading podcasts about football, he spend his time worrying about his beloved Arsenal.