Thomas Vermaelen is not panicking about his Arsenal future but admits he may have to hold some serious discussions with Arsene Wenger if he is not playing by January.
Vermaelen revealed he has already spoken to Wenger about his lack of playing time but will wait until the transfer window opens to decide if he needs to leave.
Neil Moxley of the Daily Mail provides the quotes:
I’ll have to think about that when it’s necessary. January is still a few months ahead. Of course, never playing will not be the ideal situation for me to go to the World Cup, that’s for sure.
People ask me if I panic because I’m not playing a lot but I’m not.
I have spoken to the manager but it will remain private between us. Things can happen in a split second and change my situation. That can happen tomorrow or next weekend.
In that case, we will speak differently in January. I have to be ready for that.
Vermaelen has given loyal service to Arsenal since joining in 2009 and has made over 130 appearances for the club, per ESPNFC.
As club captain, he is well respected by everybody at the Emirates, including Wenger, but finds himself incapable of breaking back into the starting XI.
The form of Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny—the Gunners have conceded five goals in six league games since their opening-day defeat to Aston Villa—has consigned Vermaelen to long spells on the bench.
In a World Cup year that is a disastrous situation for Belgium’s vice-captain, who has equally tough competition at international level.
Vincent Kompany and Jan Vertonghen are both options for Belgium coach Marc Wilmots, while the highly rated Toby Alderweireld and experienced Daniel van Buyten provide further alternatives.
Should Vermaelen make clear his desire to leave, he would surely have no shortage of suitors.
Blessed with a fine left foot, Vermaelen offers balance at the heart of the defence, allowing managers to blend a left-footer next to the more typical right-footed partner. He also has a knack of scoring, having netted 15 times during his Arsenal career.
The likes of Real Madrid, who rely upon on the erratic Pepe, instantly spring to mind as potential destinations for Vermaelen, although Wenger would first need to find cover for a defence that is already paper-thin.