Talks opened: Arsenal discuss new long-term contract for important centre-back

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According to Football Insider, Arsenal have opened talks with Rob Holding over a new long-term contract, the defender has played a starting role for the Gunners this season.

Football Insider report that Arsenal wish to extend the centre-back’s deal before Holding enters the final two years of his contract next summer.

It’s added that Mikel Arteta rates the 25-year-old highly, which is clear considering the bigger role he’s played so far this season, after starting just six Premier League matches last term.

The fact that Holding was largely used as a rotation option in cup competitions last season sparked talk of a loan exit this season, which Arteta quickly dashed after a solid outing in the opener vs Fulham.

Rob Holding in action for Arsenal.

Holding has started in 10 of Arsenal’s 14 league matches this season, second only to summer recruit Gabriel Magalhaes – who is now tailing off after an encouraging start as the side’s poor form continues.

The former England Under-21s international endured the misery of an own goal in the 2-1 defeat to Everton on the weekend – this was unavoidable but the pain is all the same we’re sure.

Is it a smart move by Arsenal to open contract negotiations now or should the Gunners leave any such talks with players until the summer?

With the side’s disastrous run pulling them into a battle with the top-flight’s relegation candidates at this moment in time, perhaps the club should hold fire on new contracts if and until their situation improves.

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