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Arsenal are reportedly waiting to seal Mesut Ozil’s exit, before they can land a ‘quality replacement’. The World Cup winner is expected to leave the Emirates this month, with just months left on his contract with the club.
Ozil, despite being the club’s highest paid earner, has not been selected by Mikel Arteta since before last season was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.
At the start of this season, Arteta opted to leave the playmaker out of his Premier League and Europa League squads, leaving him as nothing more than a spectator.
However, with the club struggling for creativity in the early months of the season, there had been suggestions he could be reintegrated for the second half of the season.
Emile Smith Rowe’s emergence looks to have ended any chance of that happening, with the academy graduate providing the kind of creativity that had been so lacking.
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Arteta has hinted that the priority of the January window is to offload the players he deems surplus to requirements, claiming they cannot sustain having such a big squad.
William Saliba and Sead Kolasinac have already completed loan moves, while the likes of Shkodran Mustafi, Alex Runarsson and Ozil could do the same before the month’s end.
Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano has claimed that Arteta could yet bring in a new midfield player, but only on the proviso they can shift Ozil’s £350,000-per-week contract.
“Arsenal want to conclude the deal with Mesut Ozil, as soon as possible, because they need to go for a quality midfielder, so selling him is so important for Arsenal,” Romano said on the Que Golazo Podcast.
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Ozil has been heavily linked with a move to Turkish giants Fenerbache, with suggestions of a move to MLS also rumourd.
And participating in a Twitter Q & A with his followers, the Turkish-born midfielder suggested he would only consider a move to Fenerbache, if he was to play in the country of his birth.
He said: “I grew up as a Fenerbahce fan as a kid in Germany – every German-Turkish person supports a Turkish team when they grow up in Germany.
“And mine was Fenerbahce. Fenerbahce is like Real Madrid in Spain. The biggest club in my country.
“There are two countries I want to play football in before I retire: Turkey and the USA.
“If I went to Turkey, I could only go to Fenerbahce.”
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Arteta claimed this week there had been no changes on Ozil’s future, but said he was looking forwar to resolve the situation, one way or the other.
“We can resolve the situation one way or another,” he said. “It’s always good to know what you’re going to do and what is going to happen.
“I knew when I made the decision the consequences that we could have. We still have to try to find the right solution for the player and the club.
“My understanding is that nothing has changed from the last press conference. That Edu and the club are having some conversations about the near future and the long-term future.
“And when we know something we will announce it.”
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