Arsenal's board hope securing Arsene Wenger to a new contract in the coming months will convince their players to also commit.

The Times says the move to encourage Wenger, 59, to commit earlier than usual is also an acknowledgement of the fact that he is the club's best hope of keeping their crop of talented young players at the Emirates Stadium.

The representatives of Robin van Persie and Theo Walcott have been engaged in contract talks for some time - with little discernible progress - as both have only one year remaining on their deals, while Cesc Fàbregas's future will always be an issue because of the strong interest in him from Barcelona and Real Madrid.