Emile Smith Rowe is poised to sign a bumper new deal with Arsenal that will see his salary skyrocket following his breakthrough with the Gunners this season.
The Gunners announced a contract extension for Folarin Balogun, who committed to a new four-year deal on Monday. And with Bukayo Saka also recently signing a long-term contract at the Emirates, Arsenal next have Smith Rowe in their sights.
The creative midfielder has forged himself into a regular starter under Mikel Arteta since Christmas. He has emerged as one of the Gunners biggest pluses of an inconsistent season, having gone from strength to strength during 2021.
Smith Rowe now has two goals and seven assists in 30 appearances this season.
The attacking midfielder’s current deal expires in June 2023 and looks set to be replaced with a long-term one.
However, his salary is reportedly poised to increase ten fold. Currently on just £180,000 a year – the terms he signed as promising academy star – Smith Rowe’s new deal is poised to rise 10 fold. That will take his salary up to around the £35,000 a week mark.
It’s also believed the new deal will keep Smith Rowe at the club until 2025.
Smith Rowe has outlined himself as a regular starter under Arteta, despite the signing of Martin Odegaard in January. And with Real Madrid likely to resist the temptation to sell the Norwegian, Smith Rowe should continue enjoying a prominent role.
Smith Rowe earns Souness praise
Sky Sports pundit Graeme Souness has been hugely impressed by Smith Rowe. He compared the player to Paul Scholes following Friday’s disappointing 1-0 home defeat by Everton.
Despite being on the losing side, Souness was quick to praise Smith Rowe for his speed of thought. And the pundit claims his abilities remind him of United legend Paul Scholes.
“I do like him, he’s got wonderful technique, pops it off first time, sees the picture,” Souness told Sky Sports.
“I don’t like midfield players – not naming any because there’s plenty around – that receive the ball and have to have two or three touches before they get their head up.
“[Smith Rowe] sees the picture early. I’m not saying this boy is like Paul Scholes. But Paul Scholes was one of those players who had a picture in his head. Whenever the ball was threatening to come near him he knew what he was going to do with it.
“[Smith Rowe] does it. Pops it off first time, moves, he’s silky, and he works his socks off. I think he’s got a big future.”