Report: Chelsea interested in signing Mesut Ozil

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Mesut Ozil could be staying in England’s capital city next season. But not playing for Arsenal.

[ MORE: Wenger hails Mesut Ozil ]

A report from SportBild in Germany claims that Ozil, 29, is being lined up by Arsenal’s Premier League, and London, rivals Chelsea with the German playmaker out of contract on July 1, 2018 and free to talk to non-English teams on Jan. 1 about a free transfer in the summer.

Per the report, other clubs have been put off by Ozil’s wage demands of over $450,000 per week but Chelsea are apparently willing to get closer to what he wants when they are free to negotiate in the summer.

Arsene Wenger has already stated that both Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil will not be sold in January as their contracts have just over six months to run.

Ozil’s form in recent weeks has been hugely impressive with the former Real Madrid star bagging five assists and two goals in Arsenal’s last five games in the Premier League.

With Barcelona and Manchester United both linked with a move for Ozil, the Gunners midfielder is yet to sign a new deal in north London despite many believing he is more likely to stick around at the Emirates Stadium than his teammate Sanchez, who is in a similar contract situation.

Could Chelsea fit Ozil into their plans?

Alvaro Morata and Eden Hazard are forming a fine partnership up top for the Blues and behind them Antonio Conte has plenty of options with Pedro, Willian and Cesc Fabregas able to operate in the advanced midfield positions. That said, Ozil’s mercurial talents obviously speak for themselves but Conte’s love for players who work hard, defend and put themselves on the line do exactly line up with Ozil’s best traits.

It has taken Conte over 12 months to fully appreciate Fabregas and his playmaking abilities, but with Wenger praising Ozil’s fight and spirit in recent weeks as the main reason behind his superb performances, perhaps the penny has dropped for the German international.

Ozil won’t be short of suitors who want to speak to him in January and in the summer before his deal ends and Chelsea would love nothing more than to snatch away one of the key players from their crosstown rivals.

File this one under: unlikely, but wouldn’t surprise me if it happened.