Soccer - Arteta confident on Saka signing new contract

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - Premier League - Arsenal v Leicester City - Emirates Stadium, London, Britain - August 13, 2022 Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta REUTERS/Tony Obrien

LONDON (Reuters) - Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta believes England winger Bukayo Saka will sign an improved contract before the World Cup.

The 20-year-old has become a key component of the Arsenal team and signed a long-term deal two years ago.

"I am very confident that we as a club, Bukayo and his family and agent are all aligned," Arteta told reporters. "Now it's about putting that on a piece of paper."

Saka will almost certainly be part of England's squad for the World Cup that starts in Qatar in November and Arteta wants to avoid any further distractions for the youngster.

"I would like that to get done because I don't want players to be distracted in the season," he said. "But these things take time and they have to go through the right process, and I think the process has been really good."

Arsenal have started the season in encouraging fashion and are the only team, apart from champions Manchester City, to have won both of their opening games.

They face newly-promoted Bournemouth away on Saturday, the team Arteta faced in his first match in charge in December 2019.

"It's been great to win, great to perform well. But it's just two games, there's a whole season ahead of us," Arteta said. "We have to focus on the next match, what's ahead of us and the areas that we can improve.

"It will be a really tough match. I played there many times. It's a team that is used to winning because last year they had a really good season and they've started the season well.

"I know the squad very well as well and I know they're going to make a really difficult game for us."

(Reporting by Martyn Herman; Editing by Alex Richardson)

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