Bukayo Saka has signed a new contract at Arsenal, extending his commitment to the club until 2027 and injecting their flagging Premier League season with a sizeable shot of positivity.
There had been little doubt in recent months that Saka, an academy product who has become arguably the leading light in Mikel Arteta’s young side, would agree new terms.
The Guardian reports that the 21-year-old will secure a significant pay increase on his existing deal, signed in 2020, ensuring his place in Arsenal’s pay scale is commensurate with his impact on their rise under Arteta.
“I’m just really happy, I’m at the right place to make the next step,” Saka said. “It’s a beautiful club and I’m just so happy. When I was at the academy at Hale End, I was just a kid who wanted to play and enjoy, and obviously, as you get older it gets more and more serious. It’s been a great journey with lots of hard work and I just kept that drive in me. When I made my first team debut, that’s when I really realised: ‘Oh my gosh, I’ve really done it.’ I’ve achieved that dream and it’s now about staying here and maintaining that.”
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Saka has made 178 appearances for Arsenal, 152 of them starts, and is considered virtually undroppable by his manager. He has started all bar one of this season’s Premier League fixtures, scoring 13 times from his position on the right side of the attack. England have become similarly reliant on a rounded, intelligent, and highly effective player who is firmly among the top flight’s best: Gareth Southgate selected Saka for five of the national team’s World Cup games and saw him score in their most recent fixture against Ukraine.
Although Saka’s form has dipped slightly in the latter part of this season, in common with several of his teammates, he will be expected to lead a renewed charge for honours in 2023-24, perhaps with greater competition for his place so that Arteta can rest him judiciously.