By Nick Teale
Arsène Wenger has revealed Fran Merida has verbally agreed a new contract at Arsenal despite other clubs trying to "destabilise" him.
The Spaniard's current deal expires next summer and Fifa laws state that if the midfielder has not agreed a new deal by January, he could open discussions with other clubs.
Speaking after scoring in the Gunners' Carling Cup win over Liverpool, the 19-year-old said he was hopeful of securing a new contract at the Club and Wenger has now confirmed that deal is ready to be signed.
"He has an offer that he has agreed and he has not signed yet," said the manager ahead of the Wolves game.
However, the Frenchman has also expressed concerns that some clubs hopeful of signing the midfielder have been going behind Arsenal's back in an attempt to secure Merida's signature.
"Some clubs are doing work behind our back to destabilise him," said Wenger. "We cannot stop them but it is a fact."

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5 Nov 2009