(Title photo by Wikimedia Commons)
Gordon Ramsay might be weeping over his lost Michelin star, but the career of Arsenal’s Welsh wonder is on the opposite trajectory.
Aaron Ramsey – described as a “key player” by Arsène Wenger, his manager, yesterday – has signed a new contract that will see his wages soar 80% to £90,000 per week, and immediately declared himself “delighted”.
“I think we’ve shown so far this season what we’re all about and the direction that this club wants to go in,” beamed the mercurial midfielder. “We have a great team which we believe can achieve great things.”
Ramsey’s new wedge catapults him to level with Theo Walcott as Arsenal’s top-earning British player, on wages four-and-a-half times the size of poor Carl Jenkinson, whom Arsenal snapped up from lower-league Charlton in 2011.
Yet Ramsey remains well below the top echelon of Premier League earners, despite being one of the best players in the league this season, and even lags far behind Mesut Özil, his under-performing teammate, who earns about £140,000 per week.
Ramsey’s improvement this season is borne out by the substantial increase in goals and assists on previous seasons.
This is also demonstrated by the figures for Ramsey’s minutes per goal and minutes per assist, which have fallen from 1,351 and 676 last season to 171 and 317 respectively – both by far his best since he joined the club in 2008.
His growing influence can also be seen in his increased pitch time this season, relative to his availability: his average minutes per appearance is now 82; last season, it languished at 57. This suggests he is starting games more often and/or being substituted less.
Arsenal will be desperate for Ramsey to recover from his current injury so he can combine with Tomas Rosicky and, they will hope, reward Wenger’s faith by firing the Gunners to their first title for a decade.
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