Mesut Ozil has dropped the biggest hint yet that he wants to sign a new contract at Arsenal.
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On one condition: Arsene Wenger remains in charge.
Ozil, 28, has 18 months left on his current deal at the Emirates Stadium and alongside Alexis Sanchez there’s constant speculation of contract talks stalling and huge wages being offered to the pair from elsewhere in the Premier League, Europe and China.
Speaking to German outlet Kicker, Ozil confirmed that if Wenger (who only has a contract until the end of the current season) decides to sign a new deal then it was highly-likely he would too.
“I am very, very happy at Arsenal and have let the club know that I would be ready to sign a new contract,” Ozil said. “The fans want that I stay and now it is just down to the club. The club knows that I am here most of all because of Arsene Wenger. He is the one who signed me and he is the one whose trust I have. The club also knows that I want to be clear what the manager is going to [do in the future].”
So, very promising words from Ozil.
That said, with Wenger’s future uncertain there is a lingering doubt about Ozil’s future even though the German international speaks glowingly about his happiness with the Gunners.
The simple fact of the matter is that Ozil and Sanchez are said to be demanding high increase on their current $170,000 and $160,000 per week contracts respectively.
It is believed both want in excess of $240,000 per week and Wenger is currently the top earner at Arsenal who have been notoriously stubborn when it comes to their wage structure.
Here is the reality: if Sanchez and Ozil are both sold this summer with just 12 months left on their contract they’d fetch maybe half their market value. It would then cost about $140 million total to bring in two players of equal quality and then they’d probably demand the same kind of wages of Ozil and Sanchez want.
The answer is simple for Arsenal: hand both players new deals and get on with it. You can break down the numbers however you want but the importance of Ozil and Sanchez to Arsenal is clear for everyone to see.