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Europa League round of 16 draw

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Werder Bremen warn clubs off Mertesacker

Werder Bremen have insisted that defender Per Mertesacker is not for sale, amid reports linking him with a move to Arsenal.

• Spahic claims Arsenal talks

Arsene Wenger is believed to be a keen admirer of Mertesacker, who impressed during Germany's run to the World Cup semi-finals.

And with the Gunners looking to bolster their defensive options after the departures of Mikael Silvestre, William Gallas, Philippe Senderos and Sol Campbell, Mertesacker has been touted as a possible addition.

Arsenal had been tipped to make a bid in the region of £10 million but Werder - who are also desperately trying to hold onto fellow World Cup star Mesut Ozil - insist Mertesacker will see out the remaining two years of his contract.

"Per remains 100 percent committed to Werder," Werder general manager Klaus Allofs said. "I have already said this several times.

"Nothing has changed. Per and his advisers have so far not commented due to a request from us."

Wenger may already have a contingency plan, however, as Montpellier defender Emir Spahic claimed on Tuesday that Arsenal are chasing his signature.

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