EPL 2016/17: Hector Bellerin signs new contract with Arsenal
Hector Bellerin signs a long-term deal with Arsenal, fending off interest from Barcelona.
Spanish full-back Hector Bellerin has put pen to paper and signed a long-term deal with Arsenal. The deal will reportedly keep him at the North London club until 2022, putting to rest rumours of a potential move back to Barcelona.
Bellerin joined the Gunners youth setup back in 2011 and broke into the first team a couple of seasons ago. Cementing his rise to a top quality full back, the youngster also earned a late call-up to the Spanish Euro 2016 squad.
Bellerin was named best right back of the year last term as he helped Arsenal secure their best finish to a Premier League season in over five years. Speaking to Arsenal’s official website just after the deal was signed the Spaniard stated, "I'm really, really happy and this club is my home right now.”
"I've been here for more than five years now, so I was really, really excited when the club told me that they wanted to extend my contract.”
"I wasn't thinking about anything else other than staying here and continuing my development here. This is where I'm happy. I'm just very grateful and pleased to have signed,” the 21-year-old went on to add.
Bellerin missed Arsenal’s most recent outing against Manchester United at Old Trafford, due to injury and will be out of action for a couple of weeks. Carl Jenkinson replaced the Spanish full-back and will deputise till Wenger’s first choice right back is fully fit.
As he joined the Gunners from Barcelona, reports of a move back to Spain intensified with the player jokingly stating on record that no calls would be answered if Barcelona came calling.
The Spaniard went on to heap praise on Arsenal claiming that a title charge is strongly mounting from North London.
"Arsenal is not only about being a footballer; you have to be a good person to play here. That's what everyone transmits inside the club. You represent more than just a football club. I'm a player who tries to be an example for everyone, not just on the pitch but off it as well.
"Now I've just got to keep on progressing, keep working hard to be the best player I can be, and hopefully help the team to be where it's got to be, to win some silverware. That's what everyone wants, and that's what I'm working towards."
With one transfer saga almost done and dusted the Bellerin deal is subject to the completion of the regulatory process. Arsenal are also currently in the process of tying down Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez to new contracts.
The Gunners host PSG on Wednesday night in the Champions League as the battle for top spot intensifies.