Wojciech Szczesny and Arsenal Agree on Long-Term Contract

Patrick ClarkeCorrespondent INovember 16, 2013

NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND - MAY 19:  Wojciech Szczesny of Arsenal celebrates after team-mate Laurent Koscielny scored the opening goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Newcastle United and Arsenal at St James' Park on May 19, 2013 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England.  (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
Stu Forster/Getty Images

Arsenal and goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny have agreed to a long-term contract extension, according to the club's official website

A very pleased Szczesny expressed his gratitude to the club after signing the deal, per Arsenal.com: "I am very pleased to have signed a new contract...I’ve been at this club for over seven years now and I’d just like to take the opportunity to thank everyone for their support towards me during my time here."

The 23-year-old Pole has been vital to the Gunners' success during their current Premier League campaign. At the moment, Arsenal sits atop the league table with 25 points, two points clear of second place with more than a quarter of the season gone. 

Perhaps the biggest reason for the Gunners' surge to the top has been improved play in front of goal. Szczesny has started all 11 league matches, recording 35 saves and conceding just 10 goals over that time. Only Tottenham Hotspur and Southampton have conceded fewer goals to this point. Therefore, securing Szczesny for the long haul was clearly the right move for the league leaders.

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 24:  Wojciech Szczesny of Arsenal directs his defence during the Barclays Premier League match between Fulham and Arsenal at Craven Cottage on August 24, 2013 in London, England.  (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)
Jamie McDonald/Getty Images

Head coach Arsene Wenger is certainly in favor and had high praise for the Polish stopper after the announcement, per Arsenal.com:

We’re very pleased Wojciech has signed a new long-term contract. I have always believed he is an extremely talented player, with excellent reflexes and good mental strength. He continues to grow and improve all the time too, so he has the potential to be even better. He can be an important part of Arsenal Football Club for many years to come.

Szczesny has been with Arsenal for years, joining the club's youth academy as a teenager in 2006. Since being brought up to the senior squad in 2009, Szczesny has made over 100 appearances, improving steadily year after year. 

The talented goalkeeper has started all but two matches for Arsenal in 2013-14 and has made three appearances with Poland's national team this year.


Follow Bleacher Report Featured Columnist Patrick Clarke on Twitter. 

Follow _Pat_Clarke on Twitter