Arsenal’s hope of landing their long term target Lars Bender in the January transfer window has suffered a blow, as the German has penned down a contract extension with Bayer Leverkusen that will keep him at the club till 2019.
Back in 1st July, 2013, Guardian writer Dominic Fifield reported that Arsenal have made an inquiry and approached with around £18.5m offer for the German star, but such advances were knocked down immediately as Bayer made it clear that the player was simply not up for sale.
On 29th September, The Daily Star reported that Arsenal have had £18.5m bid rejected by the German club though Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has refused to give up on him and cold return with a £20m offer.
Knowing the reputation of Daily Star for fabricating a story, we searched German media to get their versions. German newspaper Bild reported next day that the story is all but a wild rumour. They however claimed that Wenger is a big fan of the midfielder and the Frenchman was interested in signing him in the summer.
Bayer Sporting Director Rudi Voeller told that time:
“We are not willing to sell Lars. At the moment, we haven’t had an offer for him. Much more important is that Lars was not seriously injured yesterday.”
And now, Bender has committed his future for the club, putting an end to this constant speculation. The midfielder,who is playing for Bayer since 2009 and has 12 goals to his name, said as quoted in the Bild:
“Bayer 04 has become for me a great passion. I feel in this club just probably, and it gives me great pleasure to play here.”
We all know how difficult it is to out-haggle Bayer Leverkusen from the negotiation table as Chelsea had a tough time in getting Andre Schurrle from the Bundesliga giants. Although Bender has committed his future till 2019, but we all know, these contracts mean hardly anything these days – ask Gareth Bale for that matter. These are often used as a vehicle to sell a player on a much higher price and whether that could be the situation with the German anchorman remains to be seen.