• Premier League

Vermaelen hints at Arsenal exit

ESPN staff
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Vermaelen has struggled for a place in the Arsenal side this year © PA Photos
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Arsenal captain Thomas Vermaelen has suggested he could consider leaving the club in January if he is not playing regularly in a bid to improve his World Cup prospects.

Vermaelen has been pushed out of Arsene Wenger's starting side by in-form duo Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny this season.

Although he denies he is concerned about his role at the Emirates, the 27-year-old is likely to seek a move away from the Gunners heading into Brazil 2014, with Belgium already qualified for the finals.

"I'll have to think about that when it's necessary. January is still a few months ahead," he told the Daily Mail. "Of course, never playing will not be the ideal situation for me to go to the World Cup, that's for sure.

"People ask me if I panic because I'm not playing a lot but I'm not. I have spoken to the manager but it will remain private between us.

"Things can happen in a split second and change my situation. That can happen tomorrow or next weekend. In that case, we will speak differently in January. I have to be ready for that."

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