The 23-year-old rejected two offers from Arsenal, commenting that the contract stand-off is not about money but about playing time. Oxlade-Chamberlain has family ties to the Potters; father Mark and uncle Neville both played for Stoke during the 1980s.
Since joining Arsenal from Southampton in 2011, injuries restricted him to 194 appearances, mainly on the flanks. Oxlade-Chamberlain made no secret of his desire to play in central midfield but his prospects for realising that ambition at the Emirates are limited.
With the Gunners moving to a 3 – 4 – 3 formation, The Ox – as he is affectionately known by Arsenal supporters – is likely to find his first team options even more limited. At the tail end of 2017/18, the England international was used as right wing-back as Hector Bellerin, 22, was dropped and then in the FA Cup final as left wing-back when injuries decimated the Gunners defence.
However, Stoke’s interest comes as a surprise with Liverpool and Chelsea both supposedly interested. It’s a sign of the new money swirling around in the Premier League that Stoke are being given serious time and consideration.
The question Oxlade-Chamberlain must answer is whether first-team football at Stoke is better than a squad place Arsenal, Liverpool, or Chelsea.