Arsenal have confirmed that three first-team stars have agreed new contracts to remain at the club beyond the end of season, while Dani Ceballos' loan from Real Madrid has been extended until the end of the current campaign.
As reported was imminent on Tuesday, defensive trio David Luiz, Pablo Mari and Cedric Soares have all signed fresh terms to secure their futures beyond 2019/20.
As quoted on the club's official website, technical director Edu said: “I am really happy that we will have these players in our squad for the future. They have been part of the long-term technical plan Mikel and I have developed. They bring the right balance to our squad.
“David is a really important player for us. He has played most of our matches this season and has been important for the team. His passing, his communication with the team on and off the pitch. He helps everyone.
“With Pablo we’re all disappointed he got injured at Manchester City. Since Mikel arrived here he was asking for a central defender who was left-footed. We were really pleased with Pablo - his behaviour, the way he is training, his mentality and his quality. Unfortunately, he has that injury but of course we are really happy to keep him for the future.
“Cedric is also going to be an important player. He has been unlucky with the injuries but he is close to being ready and gives us more strength in the right-back position. We’re also pleased Dani will finish the season here. He is making a good contribution and we look forward to him having a strong finish to the season.”
While Arsenal have not specified the terms of each player's contract, it was reported earlier in the week that Luiz would sign a new one-year deal. Meanwhile, January loan arrivals Mari and Cedric, the latter of whom is yet to make a first-team appearance for the club, have both been given four-year contracts.
The idea of handing a new deal to Luiz, in particular, has been an unpopular notion among many Arsenal fans, with the 33-year-old's disastrous 25-minute cameo performance in the 3-0 defeat to Manchester City providing ammunition for the argument that he is no longer good enough for top-level football.