Arsene Wenger wants Arsenal star to stay despite West Ham interest

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Arsene Wenger wants Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to stay at Arsenal after reports emerged that West Ham are interested in the want-away winger.

Wenger says he is surprised by reports that the 23-year-old wants to leave Arsenal in the summer and says he wants him to stay.

Reports emerged on Thursday that the England international no longer sees a future for himself at the Emirates and wants a fresh start a new club.

But Wenger says he still rates Oxlade-Chamberlain “highly”, despite only starting him on 11 occasions so far this season. The Frenchman said:

“I am surprised by that [reports] because I believe he has developed well and played well when given his chance.

“When you are somewhere you have to want to be there first. After that I say I rate him highly and I think I showed that by staying behind him when he was injured.

“I personally wish he stays – I think he is a very promising player who has developed well and who looks also to have the values we rate.”

Hammers Boss Slaven Bilic is desperate to strengthen his squad with proven Premier League talent this summer and could yet turn to the 24-time England international.

With just one season left on his contract, the Ox would likely be available for a cut-price deal which could intensify interest in his signature.

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Aidan Lonergan is a journalist based in Romford. He can be followed on Twitter at @ajlonergan.