By Editor Wayne Veysey| Former Evening Standard, Press Association and Goal chief correspondent with 17 years experience of breaking big stories, including exclusives like this
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Jack Wilshere is close to agreeing the terms of a new £31.5million Arsenal contract, Football Insider sources understand.
The injury-plagued midfielder has indicated to the club he will commit to a deal that will lift his salary to £110,000-a-week and run until 2021.
Talks have been taking place since last summer about an extension and all parties are now confident that an agreement is almost in place.
The deal is set to be announced when Wilshere makes his return from the shin injury that has sidelined him for the enitre season.
The England international’s current £90,000-a-week agreement has two-and-a-half years left but the Londoners do not want to risk a situation where he could be antagonised into pushing for a transfer.
It comes after Arsenal announced last month that left-back Nacho Monreal has agreed a new three-and-a-half-year £80,000-a-week contract.
Manager Arsene Wenger retains full faith in Wilshere despite some off-field controversies and the series of serious injuries that have stalled his progress since his breakthrough 2010-11 campaign.
The Gunners talisman is closing in on a return from the fractured left fibula that has kept him out for the entire season, with Wenger hopeful he can play again within weeks.
Wilshere is back in training this week and is likely to have a run-out with Arsenal Under-21s before returning to the senior team.
As revealed by Football Insider, Arsenal have offered the England international a lucrative package that would lift him into the second bracket of earners at Emirates Stadium, behind best-paid duo Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez but alongside Aaron Ramsey and Theo Walcott, who signed a new four-year contract last summer.
Ozil is hoping to secure a £180,000-a-week deal that will elevate his salary by £50,000-a-week and make him the highest-paid player in Arsenal history.
Wilshere was a target of Manchester United and their neighbours Manchester City last summer but Arsenal have no intention of cashing in on their academy graduate and will continue to reject any bids for him.