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Mikel Arteta’s strong declaration on Mesut Ozil’s legacy ahead of Arsenal exit

Mikel Arteta insists Mesut Ozil’s legacy at Arsenal will not be tarnished by the underwhelming – and often bitter – nature of his exit.

Ozil, 32, is poised to leave the Gunners and join Fenerbahce within a matter of days, ending the midfielder’s seven-and-a-half year stay in north London.

The German has not played for Arsenal since March 2020 and his frosty relationship with Arteta means he has spent the current season appearing to aim subtle digs at the manager who exiled him.

Nonetheless, Arteta claims Ozil – who won three FA Cups and made over 250 Arsenal appearances – will be remembered fondly.

Arteta insisted Ozil’s legacy at the Emirates is secure

“What Mesut has done at the football club is unquestionable and that will stay,” said the Spaniard. “It doesn’t matter if he plays two more games, 10 more games or none.

“I think what he has done is there for the records, the history of the club and his contribution, nobody can discuss that.”

Ozil’s imminent departure comes as Arteta aims to trim his squad for the second half of the season, with William Saliba already leaving on loan to Ligue 1 club Nice.

FA Cup Final 2015
The German picked up three FA Cup winners’ medals

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Sead Kolasinac has also departed on loan for Bundesliga side Schalke 04, but Arteta admits transfer dealings have been made even more difficult by the current coronavirus circumstances.

He added: “At the moment, the market is really complicated. The situation around every club is not easy and to get the negotiations going as well is harder because you cannot be face to face.

“You cannot travel to another country and make a deal happen like that. Everything has to be through the phone or Zoom. It can go either way to be fair.

“I can tell you what I would like, which is on day one to have the squad like I want and the players out and in sorted, but I think it is really complicated right now.”

Do you agree with Mikel Arteta’s positive verdict on Mesut Ozil’s Arsenal legacy? Have your say in the comments.

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Arsenal transfer round-up: 1st signing of month sealed as Brandt update issued

We are now a week into the January transfer window and things are starting to heat up off the pitch for Arsenal.

Gunners boss Mikel Arteta is known to be keen to strengthen his side in the coming weeks as he continues to try to turn their season around.

And there are also likely to be a number of outgoings, with Sead Kolasinac having already left on loan and Mesut Ozil looking set to depart in the near future.

So what could we see happen in the next few days?

Here is all the latest news coming out of the Emirates…

Gunners complete Rekik deal

Omar Rekik has signed a professional deal with Arsenal

Nineteen-year-old centre-back Omar Rekik has signed a professional contract at Arsenal and will immediately join the U23 squad.

The Dutch centre-back makes the move from Hertha Berlin, and looks to be a bright prospect for the future.

Rekik has also represented Feyenoord, Manchester City, PSV Eindhoven and Marseille at youth level.

Brandt update issued

Julian Brandt has struggled for game time at Borussia Dortmund
Julian Brandt has struggled for game time at Borussia Dortmund

Dortmund sporting director Michael Zorc says the club are yet to receive any offers for midfielder Julian Brandt.

The 24-year-old has been strongly linked with a move to North London in the current window following his impressive performance in the Bundesliga.

But speaking to German publication BILD, Zorc simply said: “We can’t do anything about rumours that are constantly being spread that simply don’t reflect the truth.

“There’s currently no interest.”

Arsenal may miss out on Buendia

Emi Buendia continues to impress for Norwich
Emi Buendia continues to impress for Norwich

Another midfielder the Gunners have been strongly linked to is Emi Buendia.

Following on from his superb performances in the Premier League with Norwich last season the Argentinean has been instrumental in helping the Canaries to the top of the Championship in the current campaign.

However, according to The Telegraph the East Anglian club have insisted he is not for sale at any price this month.

They are in a relatively strong financial position having received £25m for Ben Godfrey from Everton and £15m for Jamal Lewis from Newcastle recently, and see no need to sell Buendia until the summer at the very earliest.

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Fenerbahce boss breaks silence on Mesut Ozil transfer to agree with Mikel Arteta

Fenerbahce boss Erol Bulut is remaining coy over the potential arrival in Istanbul of Arsenal’s Mesut Ozil.

It’s now 10 months since the German playmaker last played for the Gunners.

His contract expires at the end of the season, and having been left out of the club’s Premier League squad so far this season, he is unlikely to feature again.

Ozil, who arrived in North London in 2013, has been linked with a move to Major League Soccer with DC United, but is understood to prefer a move to Turkey with Fener.

This week, Ozil’s representative, Dr Erkut Sogut, claimed that the midfielder’s future would be decided in the “next seven to ten days”.

“We were not allowed to talk legally before January 1 so now we are just starting to look at the options with the numbers and details,” Sogut told ESPN.

“If we want to leave in January, I need to talk to Arsenal. If we sign for the summer, we don’t need to.”

Ozil won’t play for Arsenal’s first-team again

The Gunners are amiable to an exit for the 32-year-old this month, if a deal satisfies all parties.

Arsenal are continuing to pay Ozil £350k-a-week at present, and are keen to get his salary off their books.

On Thursday, Mikel Arteta confirmed that he is expecting a decision in the coming days – and opened up on the prospect of an immediate exit for Ozil, who has recently been given time away from the club.

“If something is sorted this month it is because it is good for both parties, for Mesut and for the club,” Arteta said.

“If that is the case we will move forward, if it is not the case then he will continue here. We will decide what is happening in the next few days.”

Fenerbahce boss Bulut was asked about a potential switch for Ozil on Thursday night, following his side’s win over Alanyaspor in the Super Liga.

And he took a stance along similar lines to Arteta.

“Mesut Ozil’s situation will become clear in the coming days,” Bulut responded when asked by beIN Sports. “Mesut’s name is very common.

“It is not possible for me to make a comment before he comes.”

According to all sides, it appears the end is in sight.

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Arsenal guilty of throwing away £145million as eighth free transfer nears

Arsenal have let go of around £145million worth of talent as Mesut Ozil nears an exit from the club in the Gunners’ eighth departure in just three years.

Axed playmaker Ozil, who is the club’s joint-highest paid player at £350,000-a-week, is set to join Fenerbahce on a free transfer, with Arsenal shelling out his salary for the rest of the season while he joins on loan.

The German is one of a number of top players at the club who have been allowed to leave on a free, showing a trend has emerged behind the scenes at the Emirates Stadium.

So here are the eight first team players who have left Arsenal since 2018 and their combined value at the time of departure, as per transfermarkt, and their stories since leaving the club.

Mathieu Debuchy – £1.8m

Now 35, Debuchy is still a regular for Saint-Etienne at right-back, despite being released by Arsenal three years ago.

Debuchy never really fired in north London after joining from Newcastle for around £12m, but has managed to revive his career in France again.

Santi Cazorla was highly talented but struggled with injuries

Santi Cazorla – £2m

An up and down six years at Arsenal came to an end for Cazorla when he rejoined Villarreal in 2018, where he too re-found some of his best form.

Cazorla showed real glimpses of being world class, but struggled heavily with injuries at the Gunners.

Now playing for Al Sadd in the Qatar Stars League.

Aaron Ramsey – £36m

Many a tear was shed when Ramsey called time on his Arsenal career to join Juventus two years ago, with several questioning how he was allowed to leave for nothing.

In truth, the Welshman has been hit and miss in Italy, but at only 30 still, could hit still hit his stride again either overseas or back in the Premier League.

Aaron Ramsey is proving to be an expensive mistake for Juventus
Aaron Ramsey has struggled since joining for Juventus

Jack Wilshere – £18m

Still carrying a decent value, Wilshere is currently unemployed after being released by West Ham over the summer.

Injuries have plagued him wherever his career has taken the England international, and maybe Arsenal made the right call with this one.

Alexis Sanchez – £63m

Perhaps technically not a free transfer, Sanchez joined Manchester United in a swap deal, where he turned out to be a huge flop.

Sanchez actually scored plenty of goals during his time at the Emirates Stadium, and was somewhat of a fan favourite.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Alexis Sanchez both left Arsenal without the club bringing in a penny

Danny Welbeck – £10m

Welbeck never really fulfilled his potential at Arsenal despite being given five years to try; it was a similar story at Watford last season, the club he joined after being released.

The 30-year-old has now joined Brighton, and will be hoping he can impress before his career draws to a close.

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Henrikh Mkhitaryan – £18m

The makeweight in the Sanchez swap deal, Armenian playmaker Mkhitaryan had one decent season at Arsenal before packing his bags for Roma on loan.

The 31-year-old has made the Italian capital his permanent residence since, and seem to be in the form of his life.

Mesut Ozil is set to leave Arsenal this winter

Mesut Özil – £4.5m

The Ozil story is a sad one – a fan favourite and a loyal servant to the club, albeit on eye watering wages, left to rot after being exiled from Arteta’s squad.

The German will be hoping to revive his career at Fenerbahce, if that move goes ahead, and Gunners fans will no doubt be wishing him well.

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Arsenal transfer round-up with Ozil exit latest, Liverpool receive Balogun boost

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta is continuing to overhaul his squad as he continues to fire the Gunners up the Premier League table.

The Gunners are now within touching distance of the Europa League qualification spots after three consecutive wins over West Brom, Chelsea and Brighton.

Mesut Ozil is reportedly in line to follow Sead Kolasnic out of the exit door, with the German playmaker said to be in talks with a move to Fenerbahce.

There is still a need for reinforcements though as Arteta seeks to stamp his vision on the team now the January transfer window has begun, but it remains to be seen where the Spaniard will turn for now.

Here’s the latest Arsenal transfer news.

Mesut Ozil exit latest as Fenerbahce loom

Mesut Ozil’s exit to Fenerbache is getting increasingly closer

Mesut Ozil’s agent has admitted that he and his client have begun to look at a move away from the club.

Reports in Turkey have claimed that the 32-year-old is set to join Fenerbahce on a three-year deal, which Dr Erkut Sogut neither confirmed nor denied.

“We were not allowed to talk legally before January 1 so now we are just starting to look at the options with the numbers and details,” Sogut told ESPN on Wednesday.

Ozil is set to leave Arsenal on a free when his contract expires in the summer, but could still depart this month if he is able to strike a move which works for all parties.

Gunners hand Liverpool Folarin Balogun boost

Folarin Balogun could be set for a move to Liverpool

Liverpool could be in line for a surprise deal to sign Folarin Balogun from Arsenal for free.

Arteta is keen to offload players this January, and The Independent claims Balogun has been deemed surplus to requirements – along with eight other players.

That update will be welcome news for the Premier League champions, with Liverpool big admirers of the teenager.

As his contract being up at the end of the season, Balogun has the right to talk to foreign clubs about a future free transfer and even sign a pre-contract agreement.

But if Liverpool want him, they’ll either have to agree a fee with Arsenal to take him now or risk waiting for the summer and hoping he’s still available.

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Daka fuels transfer links with claim

Patson Daka claims he wants to emulate some of the Premier League’s biggest stars

RB Salzburg forward Patson Daka claims he will go on to emulate Arsenal captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Liverpool stars Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah.

Daka, 22, is a target for some of the Premier League’s biggest clubs, with Liverpool, Arsenal and Manchester United all believed to be monitoring the centre-forward.

And he could be in line for a move to an English club after insisting he aims to match the African talent currently on show in the top flight.

“To see our big brothers like Aubameyang, Salah, Mane, it’s something that gives me the dream that I can also make it,” Daka told BBC Sport.

“I can be like them. They are my inspiration, knowing that they also come from Africa.

“I think when people are making those kinds of comparisons, it’s great, looking at the status of Sadio Mane, the kind of football he plays and the kind of person that he is.”

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Arsenal set to snap up Omar Rekik in first January transfer window deal

Arsenal are set to confirm their first signing of the January transfer window, according to reports.

Football Insider claims the Gunners have been working quietly to secure the arrival of 19-year-old Omar Rekik.

The Gunners are set to be active in the January market after a turbulent start to the season.

A recent improvement in form has seen them record three wins on the bounce in the league, leaving them within touching distance of the European spots.

Mikel Arteta is set to use the January window to try and go after a new creative midfielder, but it seems they’re casting their net wider than that.

Arsenal are set to sign Omar Rekik

The Arsenal squad will likely be trimmed this winter, with as many as eight first-team players said to be on the transfer list.

But Arteta is also planning for the future, and seems to have done so with his first signing.

Rekik, who has looked impressive for Hertha Berlin, reportedly underwent a medical at Coloney earlier this week.

Omar Rekik reportedly completed a medical this week

Arsenal will pay just £540,000 for his services, claims Football Insider.

Per Mertesacker, who works with Arsenal’s academy, reportedly had a key role to play in the transaction.

Rekik is set to join up with the first-team squad immediately for training, but is expected to play for the youth team at first.

The youngster initially spent time in Manchester City ’s academy before leaving for PSV.

His contract is up at the end of the season, and that could be part of the reason for Arsenal being able to get him for such a relatively cheap fee.

He is unlikely to be the only player Arsenal sign this month, with reports suggesting they’ll make a move for a new creative playmaker once Mesut Ozil has left – a move that will save the club £350,000-per-week until the end of the season.

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Ozil’s promise to mother may influence next move as Arsenal exit edges closer

The clock finally looks to be ticking down on Mesut Ozil’s Arsenal career with the German midfielder seemingly set to move before the end of the month.

The 32-year-old has not played for the Gunners since March, and with his contract set to expire at the end of the season it appears the best solution for all parties is for him to depart in the current transfer window.

Ozil has been linked with a whole host of clubs, with reports that his agent is in talks with American club DC United over a potential move to the United States.

But it is Turkey that seems his most likely destination, with Istanbul-based side Fenerbahce the favourites for his signature at the moment.

Mesut Ozil promised his mother he would join Fenerbahce one day

And if Ozil does go to the Super Lig side he would be fulfilling a promise he made to his mother.

According to Turkish publication Spor X, Ozil told his mother Gulizar back in 2018: “When my contract ends (with Arsenal), I will play in Fenerbahce as I promised you.”

Despite growing up in Germany and playing for the German national side Ozil is of Turkish heritage, and is said to have grown up a fan of Fenerbahce.

Therefore a move to the club would not come as a huge surprise – although DC United may well attempt to lure Ozil by offering him a much more lucrative package than Fenerbahce can afford.

Wherever he ends up, Ozil will always be remembered as a figure who split opinion during his time at Arsenal.

Ozil's time at Arsenal looks all but over
Ozil’s time at Arsenal looks all but over

One celebrity fan who is certainly ready to see the back of him is Good Morning Britain presenter Piers Morgan.

After being embroiled in a Twitter spat with Ozil for a number of weeks, Morgan posted on Wednesday morning upon news of the player’s potential departure: “BOOM! Finally, some good news in 2021!

“If you need a (covid-secure) lift to the airport @MesutOzil1088, let me know.”

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Piers Morgan sends Mesut Ozil brutal message as he nears Arsenal exit

Piers Morgan has sent Mesut Ozil a brutal message on Twitter as he nears the exit door at Arsenal after eight years at the club.

World Cup winner Ozil is reportedly in talks with both DC United and Fenerbahce over a January move, after being frozen out at Arsenal.

His agent confirmed his intentions to leave this Wednesday, telling ESPN: “We were not allowed to talk legally before January 1 so now we are just starting to look at the options with the numbers and details.”

Morgan, a life-long Arsenal fan, has been embroiled in a Twitter spat with Ozil for the past couple of months, and saw the news that he’s ready to leave as a good opportunity to aim another dig at the German.

Piers Morgan has sent Mesut Ozil a brutal message on social media

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He tweeted: “BOOM! Finally, some good news in 2021! “If you need a (covid-secure) lift to the airport @MesutOzil1088, let me know.”

Ozil is yet to respond to Morgan, but may do so once his future has been decided.

Arsenal midfielder Ozil is one of 12 players on the chopping block at the Emirates, with Mikel Arteta looking to part company with as many as eight individuals this January.

World Cup winner Ozil is reportedly in talks with both DC United and Fenerbahce

According to The Independent, the players most in danger of leaving are: Shkodran Mustafi, Mohamed Elneny, Reiss Nelson, Calum Chambers, Folarin Balogun, Joe Willock, and Sokratis Papastathopoulos.

Konstantinos Mavropanos and Lucas Torreira could also be sold if an acceptable offer is made for them, while Sead Kolasinac and William Saliba have already left on loan.

Will Arsenal finish in the Premier League top four this season? Have your say here.

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Ozil’s agent confirms star is leaving Arsenal with exit to be sorted ‘in days’

The agent of Mesut Ozil has confirmed the midfielder’s future will be decided in the “next seven to ten days”.

Reports in Turkey have claimed that the 32-year-old is set to join Fenerbahce on a three-year deal.

However, Ozil’s representative, Dr Erkut Sogut, has denied his client has made an agreement with any clubs as yet.

“We were not allowed to talk legally before January 1 so now we are just starting to look at the options with the numbers and details,” Sogut told ESPN on Wednesday.

Ozil is set to leave Arsenal on a free when his contract expires in the summer, but could still depart this month if he is able to strike a move which works for all parties.

Mesut Ozil’s future will be decided before the end of the month, his agent confirms

MLS outfit D.C United are believed to be interested in taking Ozil across the pond, but Dr. Sogut refused to confirm whether they had made an approach.

“I can’t talk about the clubs directly because it would be unprofessional but generally, there is six months left on the contract and it is nothing unusual that we will talk to people about different opportunities and try to find the best option for Mesut.

Mikel Arteta’s Gunners have been starved of title glory for a while now – but things could be changing as a new-look Arsenal side plot a course to success.

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New signings Gabriel Magalhaes and Thomas Partey have hit the ground running following their big money summer arrivals, and the new-look Gunners are going all out for a top four spot and Europa League glory this term.

The Mesut Ozil situation continues to hang in the background and there’s plenty going on in North London to keep abreast of.

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“He might stay at Arsenal until the summer but he might go. Mesut’s priority is to stay but you never know in football, things can change very fast. For the moment, we are just checking all the options for January and the summer.”

Arsenal are keen to get Ozil off their books but he is in no hurry to cut short his £350,000-per-week contract.

Which club would be a good destination for Ozil? Have your say below.

Ozil has been frozen out by Mikel Arteta at Arsenal this season
Ozil has been frozen out by Mikel Arteta at Arsenal this season

His current deal at the club is thought to contain a number of incentives, and Arsenal would likely have to agree on a mutual termination package to move him on this month.

“If we want to leave in January, I need to talk to Arsenal,” Dr Sokut added. “If we sign for the summer, we don’t need to. That’s the situation.

“In the next seven to ten days, it will be a little clearer as now the transfer window is open, things can move faster.”

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Kylian Mbappe’s transfer value drops by £100m as impact of Covid-19 emerges

(fees in €)

Marcus Rashford, Manchester United – 165.6m

Erling Haaland, Borussia Dortmund – 152.0m

Trent Alexander-Arnold, Liverpool – 151.6m

Bruno Fernandes, Manchester United – 151.1m

Kylian Mbappe, Paris saint-Germain – 149.4m

Jadon Sancho, Borussia Dortmund – 148.3m

Joao Felix, Atletico Madrid – 141.5m

Alphonso Davies, Bayern Munich – 139.2m

Raheem Sterling, Manchester City – 136.9m

Kai Havertz, Chelsea – 136.0m

Timo Werner, Chelsea – 135.1m

Mohamed Salah, Liverpool – 134.0m

Ruben Dias, Manchester City – 126.8m

Sadio Mane, Liverpool – 123.8m

Bukayo Saka, Arsenal – 116.2m

Achraf Hakimi, Inter Milan – 113.7m

Mason Mount, Chelsea – 109.3m

Ansu Fati, Barcelona – 108.4m

Harry Kane, Tottenham – 107.0m

Frenkie De Jong, Barcelona – 105.7m