Arsenal playmaker Mesut Ozil has called for manager Arsene Wenger to bring some new faces to the club this summer. The German also feels the Gunners still have hope in the Premier League title race, despite trailing leaders Leicester City by 11 points.
And he believes Pep Guardiola will have a big impact on Manchester City next season.
Speaking to German publication Welt am Sonntag (h/t James Benge of the London Evening Standard), Ozil made a thinly veiled call for reinforcements: "We know that it will not be easy and that we need reinforcements if we want next season to be on top here again. It is again interesting to see who invests in who and how much the clubs do during the summer break."
Spending big may be necessary in order to keep Ozil around after this season. Back in February, German publication Bild (h/t the Daily Telegraph's Callum Davis) suggested La Liga side Barcelona want to sign Ozil if he doesn't agree a new contract with the Gunners.
Recently, Sven Goldmann of German source Der Tagesspiegel told Benge and the Evening Standard how Ozil shouldn't stay at Arsenal.
Many would concur with Ozil's view and welcome any attempt to put pressure on Wenger to peel the cobwebs off the club's chequebook. It's not something the Frenchman did last summer, when Arsenal didn't sign a single outfield player.
That frugal policy left the Gunners woefully short of title-winning quality in the final third or the necessary athletic dynamism in defensive areas. Both issues must be sold this summer if Wenger's men are going to mount a more credible title challenge in the next campaign.
Still, Ozil hasn't given up in the current title race, despite the Foxes' ample lead, per Benge:
I do not think it impossible.
Although there are only a few games left, Leicester have a run against some of the big teams to come.
We ourselves must in any case not allow any more slip-ups. The hope of the title is still there - we have the players for the title.
Despite Ozil's optimism, pegging Leicester back will be a tall order. It's one that will demand Ozil and his teammates win all of their remaining eight matches while still relying on at least three slips from the leaders.
Are Arsenal already out of the title race?
Needing that sort of luck may have many Arsenal supporters already looking toward next season. For Ozil, the excitement comes from seeing what Guardiola will do in the sky blue half of Manchester:
In addition, great coaches are coming into the league. I am thinking primarily of Pep Guardiola. Wherever he has been, he had success. He is a coach, keen on playing and his teams are feared.
I wonder what he will do with Man City. He will be imprinting his football in England and people will be surprised.
Given Guardiola's fantastic track record at both Barcelona and Bayern Munich, Ozil's words have merit. Gunners fans will hope Wenger heeds them and equips his squad with the necessary talent to make Guardiola's first year in England's top flight a disappointing one.
Then maybe Ozil and Wenger can finally deliver Arsenal's first league title since 2004.