By Nick Ames

Carl Jenkinson believes that his new contract with Arsenal is a big pledge of commitment from both player and club.

The 20 year-old right back penned a long-term deal this week, along with four of his team-mates, and says he is thrilled to form part of what could well be the Club’s backbone for many years to come.

“Obviously I’m over the moon - really happy,” Jenkinson told Arsenal.com. “I see my future at this football club and I’m delighted they see things the same way.

"Signing the contract shows commitment from me, which Arsenal can always count on, but it’s a big commitment from them as well. People here clearly have belief in me, and now I have to make sure I prove them right.”

The lifelong Gooner was plying his trade for Charlton Athletic, then of League One, just 18 months ago, and he admits that he has been on quite a journey during that time.

“I’m obviously really pleased with my progress over the past 18 months,” he said. “Of course there have been some challenging times along the way, and I’ve had to work really hard, but I’m pleased with where I am now and I’m so happy with the new contract.

"Now I just need to take every day as it comes, working and training hard.”

Fellow young British players Jack Wilshere, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Kieran Gibbs and Aaron Ramsey joined Carl in signing new contracts.

“A big thing has been made of the fact that we’re all British boys, and obviously that’s great,” said Jenkinson. “The guys who signed at the same time as me are all excellent young players and close friends of mine.

"I’m delighted not just for myself but for everyone else – it’s great for the Club as a whole, as well as for the players. We want to be playing with the best and believe we can do that here.”

If that means forming part of a team with an English base, then it will only be a positive thing in Carl’s eyes.

“We’re an English club and I think the core of the squad should reflect that,” he said. “That’s why I’m delighted the other boys have signed up with me.

"Arsenal has such a vast scouting system that it can pick up great players from numerous other countries, and that will always be the case, but I think it’s fantastic and appropriate to have an English core. It’s something the [English] fans can relate to.”

Copyright 2014 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source 21 Dec 2012