Wenger: Desire is there to sign Walcott

by Michelle Fortune , 03 January 2013

Arsenal are in talks with Theo Walcott over a new deal but Arsene Wenger is unsure of when an agreement will be reached.

Walcott's contract at the Emirates expires in the summer and with the 23-year-old in impressive form of late, Wenger and the club are keen to tie him down to a new deal sooner rather than later.

Talks had stalled over the winger's wage demands and his insistence on operating as a central striker in the future, but Wenger insists "the desire is there" for Arsenal to secure his long-term future and he is hopeful the situation will be resolved quickly.

"We are talking," Wenger told a press conference on Thursday.

"It is very difficult to be predictable in these kinds of situations but our desire is there to do it as quickly as possible and ready to do it."

Walcott's team-mates have urged him to sign a new deal and Wenger is in no doubt as to the effect it would have on the whole squad if he were to commit his future to the Gunners.

"I'm convinced it will have a positive effect on the rest of the team if we sign him. We want to keep him here," Wenger stressed.

"Our priority is to keep players at the club. We have rebuilt a team and we have to show that we can be consistent now."

While Wenger is keen to keep Walcott, the manager has confirmed that Johan Djourou and Sebastien Squillaci could leave Arsenal before the end of the transfer window.

"If Squillaci finds a club, he might go. Djourou might go as well," he admitted.

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