• Negotiations have been ongoing for last two weeks
  • Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta involved in discussions

Arsenal’s first-team players are expected to formally agree a 12.5% wage cut for the next year in the next 48 hours, making them the first squad in the Premier League to accept a reduction in pay.

The agreement, which the Guardian understands would be unanimous, will be rubber-stamped at the end of a two-week series of negotiations in which many of the players were initially reluctant to take the proposed 12-month drop in salary. The mood in several camps had been to dig their heels in and push for a deferral but all parties are now believed to have accepted the suggestion and there is confidence that it will be confirmed over the weekend.

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