Arsenal Transfer Triage: Mesut Özil

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Arsenal Mesut Özil
ST ALBANS, ENGLAND - MARCH 10: Mesut Ozil of Arsenal during Arsenal Training Session at London Colney on March 10, 2020 in St Albans, England. (Photo by David Price/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

Arsenal Transfer Triage, a new series by LWOF, continues in its second edition, this one focusing on midfield magician Mesut Özil. The German’s abilities have diminished in recent seasons and the former Real Madrid man will see his contract expire in 2021.

So, should the club offer a new deal? Or should they try to cash in on the player in the next transfer window [whenever that may be]? Would Özil acquiesce to a sale? Here are your answers.

What to Do With Mesut Özil?

A Star on the Wane

The midfielder set the Premier League on fire following his arrival in north London. Arsenal saw Mesut Özil tally 19 assists during the 2015/16 season, his third at the club, in his most effective campaign.

However, his production has slowed and Özil has posted fewer and fewer assists in every season since. In fact, the midfielder has tallied just two helpers each in the last two seasons.

That has caused wide-spread criticism of the player who currently earns £350,000 per week. Although, Arsenal have seen Mesut Özil improve under new head coach Mikel Arteta compared to under either Unai Emery or Arsene Wenger.

This begs the question, what will happen to the player once the next transfer window opens?

What Should Arsenal Do With Mesut Özil?

From the club’s perspective, this is a difficult issue. On the one hand, they have invested heavily into the player over his nearly seven years at the club. His wages have always been quite high, even before his extension and pay rise.

That’s in addition to an exorbitant transfer fee paid to Madrid to sign Özil initially. However, their investment hasn’t really paid dividends recently. His pass accuracy rate is still extremely good and his eye for a great pass is still there, just look at his assist of Alexandre Lacazette‘s goal against West Ham United.

Those moments are few and far between these days and a player making his wages is expected to contribute not only to the build-up but also to finishing play in the form of goals and assists.

From that perspective, and considering the fact that no one let alone a footballer wants a pay cut, means that offering another new contract would be foolhardy at best by the club. Given the level of investment Arsenal have made to Mesut Özil, letting him go for free in 2021 is equally unpalatable.

Who Would Take Özil?

So, the best course of action for the club is to sell the midfielder in the next transfer window. Selling Mesut Özil wouldn’t be a straight-forward task for Arsenal, however. He will certainly ask for huge wages at his next club and the north London outfit would ask for a large transfer fee.

That means whichever club wants Özil will have to part ways with a lot of money. The problem here is that his production simply doesn’t match his salary demands. So, any suitor would likely prefer to wait to bid for his services when the German can move for free.

Like it or not, the most probable scenario for Mesut Özil is that he remains an Arsenal player until at least the expiration of his contract.

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