Arsenal chief vows to learn lessons from contract mistakes

Matt Stead

Arsenal head of football Raul Sanllehi has vowed that the club have learned from their mistakes with expiring contracts.

The future of Aaron Ramsey is in significant doubt after contract negotiations with the Welshman were inexplicably cut short recently.

The situation is one of Arsenal’s own creation, with Ramsey allowed to run down to the final year of his contract at the Emirates Stadium.

A similar approach was taken with both Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez last season, with Arsenal scrambling to renew their deals.

Sanchez was instead shipped off to Manchester United in a swap deal involving Henrikh Mkhitaryan, while Ozil was made the club’s highest-paid player in what was once seen as a ‘catastrophic’ decision.

But Sanllehi insists this will soon be a thing of the past.

“In general, I do believe that a player’s contract should never go to the last year, as a policy,” Sanllehi told the Sunday Telegraph.

“But I don’t think I am inventing the wheel. Anybody could agree on that.

“Normally, the contracts of the players are for five years. You need to have a clear idea of what you want to do with that player when he is in the third year, at the latest.

“We don’t take decisions overnight, on a quick reflection. We really go through not only a long period of thinking but also a lot of people are involved. People in which we have a high trust. In general I would like to make that point clear. There are no decisions that are left to the last minute. When we reach a decision, it is for a reason.”