Arsene Wenger has suggested Theo Walcott has two months to decide whether he wants to stay at Arsenal.
The England international is in the final year of his contract and the two parties are wide apart with regard to a new deal.
Wenger said recently that the situation was a "worry" and it would appear that if common ground cannot be found, the winger may be made available for transfer in January.
"I still hope to sign him and the next two months will be vital because after that, the longer this situation lasts, then the more difficult it is," Wenger said. "Let's hope we can find a solution in the next two months."
Asked if Arsenal would consider selling Walcott during the January transfer window, Wenger added: "It will depend on the needs of the team and the club. We can afford to go to the end (of the contract) if needed."
Walcott has not started a game this season but it is down to form rather than his contract, according to Wenger. He said: "he fact he doesn't play regularly at the moment is right, but it's not necessarily linked with his contract situation. No player is happy when he doesn't play.
"At the moment, [Laurent] Koscielny doesn't play. He has just extended his contract and still doesn't play because the defence is doing well. That's only temporary because by the end of the season they will all play."