‘He belongs here’ – Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta responds to Bernd Leno transfer speculation

Mikel Arteta has responded to rumours Bernd Leno wants to leave Arsenal
Mikel Arteta has responded to rumours Bernd Leno wants to leave Arsenal (Pictures: Getty)

Mikel Arteta has responded to rumours Bernd Leno wants to leave Arsenal by insisting the goalkeeper ‘belongs’ at the Emirates.

Germany international Leno is reportedly eyeing a move away from Arsenal, less than two years after he joined the Gunners from Bayer Leverkusen.

Leno has proved a dependable goalkeeper for Arsenal, although some fans have bemoaned the fact Emiliano Martinez was sold to Aston Villa last summer.

Arteta says speculation is to be expected ahead of a transfer window but insists Leno ‘belongs’ at Arsenal, with his current contract running until the summer of 2023.

‘It’s another one with a contract here that because of the length of his contract, a lot of things will be speculating,’ Arteta said on Tuesday morning. ‘He has two years here and he belongs here.’

Leno, meanwhile, has issued a defiant response to speculation he is one of a number of senior Arsenal players looking to leave at the end of the season.

Speaking to Sky Sports last week, Leno said: ‘I am still happy at Arsenal. Arsenal is still a big club, a big name in the world and in the Premier League.

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‘There is nobody in the dressing room who says ‘I want to leave the club, I am not happy here anymore.’

Arsenal have endured a difficult season under Arteta and are just ninth in the Premier League table ahead of Wednesday’s clash against London rivals Crystal Palace.

Fans are permitted to be at Selhurst Park for the Premier League fixture and Arteta said: ‘It doesn’t matter [that they’re supporting Palace], it’s still great to have fans.

‘We are going to be lucky enough to have fans back for our last game, which we can’t wait for and to have fans there will make the atmosphere much better, and back to how this game has to be played.’

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