Mesut Özil said that his preference would “definitely” sign a new contract at Arsenal. The midfielder has entered the final 12 months of his £140,000-a-week deal and, in the absence of offers from any European clubs that could meet his wage demands, he is to stay at the Emirates Stadium for the coming season.
The biggest problem was to find out whether Özil will re-sign in the club that he has joined Real Madrid for £42.5 m in 2013, with one of its options being to wait until January 2018 to see if he gets a lucrative prior to the signing of the contract offer from a club abroad, related to a free-agent move in the summer.
Arsenal, Alexis Sanchez and the question of who will blink first
Arsenal, however, have worked hard to put forward an attractive face of their own, which is a basic value of € 280,000 a week. Up to now, there has been a waiting game, with Özil wanting to keep his options open as he moves into the new season.
“It is definitely my preference to stay,” Özil said, at the Arsenal with the release of their new third kit of Sydney. “It is a great club and I’ve always said that I feel very well at Arsenal. Once everyone is back in London, we’ll sit down and talk about the future.
“For the moment, the most important thing is our pre-season and the passage of the tour, training and getting back in shape. When I’m back in London, we’ll sit down and discuss.”
Özil has also commented on the situation of his team-mate Alexis Sánchez, who, like him, has entered the last year of his contract. Unlike Özil, however, Sanchez was elite-level suitors – with Manchester City, chief among them.
“It would have hit the team pretty hard if it is left because he is a player who always brings it,” Özil said. “It would be a setback to win the title, but, in the end, it is the decision of the player. I hope Alexis stays but I don’t know what the state is, to be honest.
“I appreciate a lot as a player and it is very well suited to the game Arsenal play. From a personal point of view, I would really appreciate if it remains. But it is the player’s decision after all, and there’s not much more I can comment on that.”