Arsenal: Arsene Wenger Admits His Best Player Could Leave

Arsene Wenger
Arsene Wenger at Birds Nest in Beijing on July 22. Yifan Ding/Getty

Arsene Wenger has admitted that Arsenal is "not super optimistic" that it will be able to keep hold of star striker Alexis Sanchez beyond this season, according to reports.

Sanchez heads into the 2017-18 Premier League campaign with just one year remaining on his contract, meaning he will be free to talk with other clubs in January.

Arsenal has not given up on agreeing a new deal with Sanchez, but according to SFR Sport, Wenger has said he is not confident that the 28-year-old will extend his contract.

The Daily Mail says Arsenal is making one last-ditch attempt to keep Sanchez by making him the highest paid player in the Premier League. The deal would be worth £300,000 a week.

Wenger says that Sanchez will not feature in Arsenal's opening game of the season, against Leicester City on Friday night, and may miss the clash with Stoke City the following weekend. Sanchez, the Frenchman says, is suffering with an abdominal issue.

Related: Arsenal faces fresh attempts to lure star striker

Manchester City and Chelsea are both reported to be keen on signing Sanchez, but Arsenal is not willing to sell to a Premier League rival. By January, however, Arsenal will have no choice over his future.

German giant Bayern Munich is also reported to be interested in signing Sanchez, with Carlo Ancelotti keen to add the former Barcelona forward.

Arsenal, meanwhile, will begin the season without Sanchez, but new signing Alexandre Lacazette is set to make his Premier League debut. The Frenchman signed from Lyon for a club record £46 million (about $59 million).