Arsenal defender Stephan Lichtsteiner has this afternoon confirmed that it will be ‘quite difficult’ to remain at the club beyond this summer.
Swiss full-back Lichtsteiner made the move to the Emirates on a free transfer last June, following a hugely-successful 7-year stint with Serie A champions Juventus.
The wily veteran was brought in as more of a squad player, with extensive knowledge of what it takes to win at the highest-level, than a certified starter.
As such, though, alongside the likes of Sokratis Papastathopoulos, Lichtsteiner has helped to introduce a more-resilient streak to the Arsenal back-line, all told, the 35-year-old has looked some way short of his previous, all-action best.
Across all competitions, Lichsteiner has managed 18 starts for the Gunners over the course of the season.
‘Difficult to stay’
As a result, with Ainsley Maitland-Niles having impressed in a wing-back berth throughout the campaign, and Hector Bellerin set to return from a long-term spell on the sidelines in the summer, it appears highly-unlikely that Arsenal will opt to extend Lichsteiner’s current deal into next season.
And, speaking in an interview with the Evening Standard this afternoon, the Swiss stopper affirmed as much:
‘I see it being quite difficult to stay. We are going to see what happens. I don’t know anything. ‘
On Arsenal’s upcoming Europa League final meeting with Chelsea, meanwhile, Lichtsteiner added:
‘The only important thing is the Europa League final now.’
‘I really want to win this cup and bring this club back to the top level. (Bring it) back to the Champions League and winning important titles.’