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Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil said he intends to stay at the club until his contract expires in 2021 and explained how the Gunners have improved under new manager Mikel Arteta.
The German told The National‘s Jon McAuley that he remains committed to the north Londoners but is unsure what his future holds after his current deal runs out:
“After this season I have one more year, so after that I will know because I can’t see the future. The thing I can do is give everything for the team, for myself, to be successful and let’s see what happens.
“What I know is that I will give everything for this club, for my teammates. We’ve had a difficult season, but we want to win games again, to take points, to maybe be in the top four at the end of the season.”
Ozil signed a new deal in January 2018 that made him the highest-paid player in the club’s history on wages of £350,000 a week before tax:
David Ornstein @David_Ornstein
EXCLUSIVE: Mesut Ozil signs a new three-and-a-half year contract to remain at Arsenal until summer 2021. Becomes highest-paid player in club history on around £350k per week before tax. Deal agreed last weekend, signed at Colney this morning. Could take him to 8yrs at #AFC & 32yo https://t.co/600XtVnbnH
However, the playmaker has endured a difficult time at the club since then. He was frozen out at times under previous manager Unai Emery but has returned to action regularly since Arteta took the helm.
Yet Ozil has not been able to replicate his best form. He has made 15 Premier League appearances for Arsenal in 2019-20 but is yet to score and has only managed one assist.
Ozil’s difficulties at Arsenal have prompted speculation over his future. Turkish side Fenerbahce were reported to be interested in signing the 31-year-old, who is of Turkish descent, in the January transfer window, according to Fotomac (h/t FourFourTwo).
Major League Soccer side DC United are also interested in Ozil but may have to wait to secure his services, according to Steven Goff at the Washington Post:
Steven Goff @SoccerInsider
D.C. United had a representative in London on Tuesday for a meeting with players and agents that included @MesutOzil1088, a dream target first reported here last August. It seems Jan. 2021 is the earliest DCU would have a chance at him. #dcu #mls #gunners
The 31-year-old has said the team are heading in the right direction under Arteta, a fellow midfielder under Arsene Wenger for two seasons. The Spaniard has only managed one Premier League win in eight matches since being named permanent boss, but Ozil said the team can secure a place in the top four:
“So, right now, everybody knows tactically that we’re improving. It’s just two months that Mikel has been here, and we have improved a lot tactically. Of course, now it’s hard times for us. It’s difficult to say because right now everything is not going well, but we know if everything is going well, if the confidence is back and if we take the right results, we will end in the top four, in the top five.”
Arsenal are in 10th place in the Premier League table, 10 points behind fourth-placed Chelsea with 13 games left to play. Their hopes of finishing in the top four remain alive, but the club will need a vast improvement in form as well other teams to drop points if they are to end the season on a high.
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