Mesut Ozil has a year left on his contract and has yet to reach an agreement with Arsenal, but a lack of interest could suggest he’s staying.
You can’t go a day without a new story about Alexis Sanchez. He’s going to Manchester City, he’s going to Bayern Munich, he’s staying at Arsenal, City are confident, Arsenal won’t sell, and so on and so on. Nobody knows what will happen but a number of people have made a guess in the hopes that they’ll eventually be proven right.
What about the other half of Arsenal’s so-called world class duo?
Mesut Ozil is in the same contract situation as Alexis and is considered to be as talented, but there doesn’t appear to be as much fuss about his future.
The contrast is striking, and one we can take a few conclusions from.
One is that there simply isn’t as much as interest in Ozil as there is in Alexis. This could be down to a combination of clubs not needing a player like Ozil and clubs feeling he’s not worth the investment required to prise him away from Arsenal.
When you look around the top clubs in Europe, none of them are short of high quality creative talent in the centre of midfield. While Ozil could also play on the flank, very few of them are missing quality wide players, either.
Few of these clubs would see Ozil as a smart investment at this point in time.
Moreover, there are tactical factors to consider as well.
The traditional number ten role is falling out favour as clubs prefer to have a harder working midfielder instead. Most top clubs favour a 4-3-3, while any club still using a 10 usually has one with high work rate, such as Isco at Real Madrid.
While laziness and an unwillingness to defend are often unfair criticisms of Ozil, his suitability for such a role is questionable.
The other conclusion we could make is that Ozil isn’t as keen to leave Arsenal as Alexis might be.
He’s always talked about how happy and comfortable he is in interviews, and his future seemed tightly linked to Arsene Wenger’s.
In addition, he seems open to the idea of one day returning to Schalke, where it all started for him, or playing in Turkey, a country he loves.
All this may contribute to the perfect storm of Ozil staying at Arsenal next season, regardless of his contract situation.