Arteta wants Balogun to stay at Arsenal

Arteta wants Balogun to stay at Arsenal

Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta says he wants to keep Folarin Balogun at the Emirates despite the youngster's contract set to expire at the end of the season. 

Balogun came in as a substitute and netted the third goal as Arsenal beat Molde 3-0 on Thursday evening. Nicolas Pepe redeemed himself with a good performance and opened the scoring for the north London side before Reiss Nelson grabbed the second for the visitors. 

19-year-old Balogun scored the third after a beautiful pass inside the box from Rowe-Smith, helping the Gunners to advance to the Europa League knock-out stages with two games to spare. 

"He is a player that I want to stay at the club. I love working with young players. You can see the talent is there, the ambition is there and he can fit with our stricture and progress in the future," said Arteta. 

"He's part of the DNA and myself and the club are working to try to extend his contract. We're trying to change the situation that we are in at the moment with him, and trying to convince him that this is the right place for him," he added. 

"He wants to stay, we want him to stay. We gave him the opportunity and he took it straight away."

The 19-year-old will able to speak to foreign clubs from January 1 if he doesn’t sign a new deal.

On scoring first Arsenal goal

"I’m feeling really happy, it shows that all the hard work I’ve put in over the years is just starting to pay off. It’s important that I keep working hard to enjoy more moments like this," he told the club's official website.

"I didn’t think that particular [break for the goal] was going to be my chance, but I always try to stay ready and I’m happy that on this occasion it paid off.

"It’s been good [to be involved], it’s nice to see the boss showing faith in me. It feels like this is good experience for me, I just need to keep on learning, keep on adding to my game and I’m happy that I could contribute today."

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