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Chuba Akpom, Arsenal Agree to New Contract: Latest Details, Comments, Reaction

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistFebruary 6, 2015

LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 01:  Chuba Akpom of Arsenal is brought down by goalkeeper Brad Guzan of Aston Villa to concede a penalty during the Barclays Premier League match between Arsenal and Aston Villa at the Emirates Stadium on February 1, 2015 in London, England.  (Photo by Paul Gilham/Getty Images)
Paul Gilham/Getty Images

Arsenal's young striker Chuba Akpom has signed a new contract with the Gunners.

Arsene Wenger nonchalantly broke the news during Friday's presser, ahead of his side's trip to face Tottenham in the north London derby. Arsenal's official Twitter account confirmed Akpom, and indeed Francis Coquelin, have extended their stays:

Arsenal FC @Arsenal

Wenger: "I'm very happy with the business we did. We met our targets and extended @cakpom and Coquelin's contracts" http://t.co/q2AgFkS0VA

Akpom took to Twitter to announce his deal, as well:

An official contract length and personal terms are yet to be announced.

According to Eurosport, Arsenal had been set to lose Akpom come the summer, with Borussia Dortmund, Feyenoord, FC Twente, Manchester CityLiverpool, Spurs and Everton all reportedly interested in signing him up.

However, the Emirates hierarchy clearly have great confidence in his ability having decided that he is worthy of a contract extension.

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 03: Chuba Akpom of Arsenal in action during the Emirates Cup match between Arsenal and AS Monaco at the Emirates Stadium on August 3, 2014 in London, England.  (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)
Michael Regan/Getty Images

Akpom has spent time on loan at both Coventry City and Brentford where he failed to really make an impact, but Wenger has given him opportunities in a Gunners shirt this season.

He has made four brief substitute appearances in 2015—two in the FA Cup and two in the Premier League per WhoScored.com—and The Guardian's Amy Lawrence believes he has shown the potential to deserve a new contract:

Amy Lawrence @amylawrence71

Arsenal have got to make sure they give Akpom the encouragement and opportunities to make sure he signs a new contract. Big potential there.

While Akpom is unlikely to warrant a first-team spot imminently—given the presence of Olivier Giroud, Danny Welbeck and Alexis Sanchez—the January loan departures of Yaya Sanogo and Lukas Podolski should allow him more opportunities in the second half of the season.

The London-born Akpom has impressed in the Gunners' youth teams as well as representing England at junior level, and Wenger clearly believes him to be a fine prospect.

The French manager is arguably unrivalled in his ability to develop young talent and Akpom could well turn out to be a fine asset for the Gunners in years to come. 

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