“My contract has one year to run and there is an option for one more season which the club can take up. I hope they do because I love Arsenal,” says Bob Pires.
Well it’s nice he wants to stay, but he must know by now that when an Arsenal player hits his thirties, the contract rules appear to change. Even the legendary Dennis Bergkamp had a few difficult moments when renegotiating his contract, so maybe we’ll see the same shenanigans this summer. He’s got one year left on his deal after this, which will take him up to 32¾, but he wants the extra year that would guarantee he could end his career at the club. Would I grant him a one-year extension? Of course I would – despite his increasingly ancient legs, and what some argue has been an indifferent season, he has still scored 13 goals. That’s a pretty good return for a midfielder who has made 30 starts in all competitions.
And it’s now over to the excitement of hurtling down the M4 at a ridiculously early time of day on Saturday. Our convoy (made up of one red people carrier, veteran of about ten semi-final and final campaigns), is all set to depart Islington at 6.30am. We’ll be twiddling our thumbs in Cardiff before 9am. Hopefully, we’ll get our hands on some baps by 9.30am and will be ready for a kip by kick-off.
Baps. What a word.