Arsenal may be willing to listen to offers for Germany international Mesut Ozil in January, rather than risk losing him on a free in the summer.
The former Real Madrid playmaker will have just six months left on his current deal when the January transfer window opens up and has a number of interested suitors.
Among those clubs are Jose Mourinho’s Premier League giants Manchester United and Italian giants Inter Milan, who were both interested in the previous transfer window.
Arsene Wenger had received ‘plenty of encouragement’ during the summer when Ozil insisted that he was settled in London and ready to sign a new deal, but at the time of writing no deal has materialised.
Ozil is reportedly requesting a huge salary increase of £350,000 per week, though Arsenal usually cap their highest earners to around £250,000 per week. The Gunners broke new ground in the latest developments of talks by offering £275,000 to the German playmaker, but Ozil has yet to be swayed.
The Germany star hasn’t featured for Arsenal recently due to an ongoing knee injury, but the Gunners have found a strong run of form without his presence. These displays have prompted Wenger and the hierarchy to consider cashing in on Ozil while they have still have the opportunity.
Ozil is set to return to fitness after the international break, but there’s no expectancy to see him straight in the starting eleven. Teammate Alexis Sanchez similarly took some time to return to Arsenal’s matchday squads following his failed move to Manchester City in the summer.
Inter president Erick Thohir isn’t confident in securing a deal for Ozil, in January but holds a concrete interest. If the Arsenal hierarchy show signs of a willingness to sell, Thohir has reiterated his desire to make a move.
Thohir said: “We are studying our squad,”
“We have scouts everywhere and they look at every kind of player.
“Luciano Spalletti knows this team has room for improvement, that’s what we are working on.”