By Emma Sanders
Mesut Ozil has suggested his future at Arsenal will depend on whether Arsene Wenger remains at the club.
In an exclusive interview with Kicker magazine, Ozil claims he wants “to be clear” about what Wenger’s future will be and that could shape his decision on whether to sign a new contract.
The playmaker admitted Wenger played a huge part in his arrival and his development as a player.
In a twist that will encourage fans, Ozil denied claims talks had stalled over wage demands and said it was uncertainty over Wenger’s future with the club that was his main concern.
“I feel very, very well at Arsenal and have shown my willingness to extend with the club. The fans want me to stay, now it’s just the club,” said Ozil.
“The club knows I am here mainly because of Arsene Wenger, who has brought me the trust I enjoy. The club also knows that I want to be clear about what the coach is doing.”
Speculation has increased in recent months as Ozil’s contract is set to expire next summer, alongside star striker Alexis Sanchez.
Wenger’s contract ends this summer and there has been little talk about a contract extension, and some fans expect the manager to depart after a 20-year affiliation with the club.
The Frenchman has seen a number of great players come and go during his time at Arsenal and Ozil is one of the biggest stars in recent seasons.
The attacking midfielder joined for £40million in 2013 and he has gone on to notch up 100 appearances in the Premier League, scoring 20 goals in the English top flight and providing 39 assists.
Football Insider verdict
In some ways the news from Ozil is very positive for Arsenal fans who might have feared that money was behind the contract talks stalling. However, Ozil has now publicly put the ball back in the Arsenal court and, for whatever reason, Arsenal aren’t ready to go public with news about Arsene Wenger’s future yet. If Wenger has decided to leave, the club will be aware that the news could seriously derail the season. However, the longer it goes on without being resolved makes it seem more likely that Wenger will leave his position at the end of the season. If he was signing a one-year extension, why would the club not release the news? Wenger has been a legendary manager for the club but there are quite a few fans who think he should stand down. With this news from Ozil, it’s surely a case of be careful what you wish for.
In other Arsenal news, this is why Giroud was angry during Preston clash.