LONDON: Arsene Wenger has indicated he is ready to commit his long-term future to Arsenal and has held preliminary contract talks with the club.
The Frenchman’s current deal expires next summer and he has been linked with Paris Saint-Germain who eventually appointed Laurent Blanc as Carlo Ancelotti’s successor.
Wenger has told the media: “I am committed to staying longer at this club. I’ve already had a chat with Ivan. It went very well, not a problem.
“The link with PSG is there because I’m French and I know the owners. But if that was the case then I would be there already. I’m not at PSG because my heart is with Arsenal.”
Wenger’s Arsenal are without a trophy since the 2005 FA Cup but Wenger believes that after several years which have seen them unable or unwilling to match the biggest players in the transfer market, they can now compete.
Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney and Liverpool’s Luis Suarez have been mentioned as possible attacking targets along with Real Madrid’s Argentina international Gonzalo Higuain.
Wenger said: “They are all realistic targets quality-wise, but not all of them are available to join us.
“We have better financial resources than the years before and it is resources we have created ourselves. That is massively important to us. For years we were out of the race for the top-level transfers but we are coming back now because we are in a better financial situation and also because of Financial Fair Play.
“I knew when I committed to my last contract and the contract before that the club were going through a very sensitive period, because we had less financial resources and the challenge was to stay at the top and in the Champions League during that period.
“We are coming out of that period and I hope in the next two or three years the club will be competing for the Premier League.”
The landscape facing the Gunners in that battle has changed significantly with the appointment of new managers at all of last season’s top three, Manchester United, Manchester City and Chelsea.
And Wenger said: “This is the biggest change in the top four in all the time I’ve been with Arsenal. Is the league more open than before? We don’t know, nobody knows.
“But we’ve got the most stability and we hope to take advantage of that. There was a big gap between us and Manchester United last season and our challenge is to bridge that gap. But you go to Manchester City, they will want to win the league. You go to Manchester United, it’s the same, to Liverpool, to Chelsea, everybody will want to win the league.”