Joe Willock signs long-term Arsenal contract
Joe Willock. Picture: Getty Images

Arsenal midfielder Joe Willock has put pen to paper on a new long-term deal with the Gunners, which will keep him at the Emirates Stadium until 2023 according to the Telegraph

The England youth international has been with the North London club since he was four years old and made his Arsenal debut in September 2017 in a 1-0 win over Doncaster Rovers in the EFL Cup. Since then he has made 20 appearances for the club scoring three goals.

The 20-year-old started Arsenal's first three Premier League games of this season after impressing on the pre-season tour of the US and has been promoted to the first team this season alongside Reiss Nelson and Emile Smith Rowe, who both signed new contracts last season.

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'Youth is an important part of our approach'

Edu Gaspar, technical director told the official Arsenal website, said: “We’re delighted that Joe has committed his long-term future to us.

“The hard work of the academy coaches and staff, Joe, his family and everyone behind the scenes have been key to the development of his potential.

“Bringing young players through to the first team from the academy is an important part of our approach and Joe’s progression is a good example for how we want to work in the future. 

"Joe has shown hard work and determination to get this far. He’s continuing to develop and we look forward to him making a big contribution to the club.

Head coach Unai Emery, who brought Willock on as a substitute for Mesut Özil in last season’s UEFA Europa League final, added: “Joe has progressed a lot in the last year.

“He is technically strong and has shown the confidence to take responsibility and play his game whatever the occasion or opposition.

“I’m looking forward to working with him to help him develop further and fulfil his potential."

Willock, whose older brother Chris left Arsenal for Benfica in 2017, is one of five Arsenal academy graduates in the first team and is grateful for the trust Emery is putting into youth this season.

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Willock aiming to repay the faith

In a separate interview on, he said: "The manager has put a lot of faith in not just in me but in a lot of youngsters so far already this season.

"It's so encouraging. In training every day he is encouraging us and to play in front of the fans with my best friends is amazing and I'm just trying to play my best and continue every day.

"I need to continue working hard and striving to play at my best.

"I feel like I can add more goals to my game and more assists and keep on affecting the game in the best way I can and helping us to win. 

"I always want to be playing week in, week out in the first team and showing what I can do.

"So that's my main goal really, to break into the first team and establish myself and play week in, week out and show the fans what I can do."