Arsenal contract rebel Mesut Ozil is reportedly ready to sign a new deal at the club and is willing to negotiate after being offered a £280,000-per-week salary. Manager Arsene Wenger signed a two-year extension of his own earlier this week.
According to The Sun's Charlie Wyett, Ozil was holding out for new terms worth £350,000 per week, but the Germany international is "prepared to cut a deal" in order to remain at the Emirates Stadium.
It's unknown whether the £280,000 per week offered has satisfied Ozil's needs as of yet, with the playmaker on the cusp of entering the final 12 months of his current contract.
There have been reports to the contrary, however, and The Times previously indicated Wenger's new deal would have no impact on the futures of Ozil and fellow contract rebel Alexis Sanchez, per Samuel Jay C:
@Arsenal Alexis & Ozil want to leave Arsenal despite Wenger signing new 2-year deal, according to @TimesSport. #AFC https://t.co/JOJ3SlKOdc2017-5-30 21:35:43
Ozil's future at the Emirates has long been in doubt, and Arsenal's failure to clinch a top-four finish in the Premier League—thus missing out on UEFA Champions League qualification—won't have helped matters at all.
The German has formed something of a reputation for inconsistency this season, but Ozil showed glimpses of his class during Arsenal's 2-1 win over Chelsea in the FA Cup final, per BBC 5 live pundit Jermaine Jenas:
BBC 5 live Sport @5liveSport
'Ozil has been the best player on the pitch' Jermaine Jenas' very impressed with Mesut Ozil #CFC 0-1 #Arsenal 📻 https://t.co/NI1sjtGRxI https://t.co/ROpUYn1GIR2017-5-27 17:16:57
If Ozil were to sign a contract for the reported weekly salary, it would represent a 100 per cent increase on his current £140,000-per week earnings, per Metro, and a substantial shift from the club's usual wage structure.
But while the north Londoners are desperate to keep hold of a select few superstars, Squawka's Greg Johnson recently argued the club's biggest asset is its strength in depth:
Greg Johnson @gregianjohnson
@Jonny_Singer Don't think that's accurate. Lots of young potential, sure. They haven't got the balance & mix Arsenal have, or the depth.2017-5-30 11:39:13
Arsenal are at a crossroads in deciding whether Ozil—and Sanchez—are worth the added investment after failing to finish among the Premier League's top four this term and considering the former wasn't always at his best.
Former Arsenal defender Martin Keown said the manager may be forced to make a difficult decision and indicated losing Ozil and Sanchez would be acceptable losses.
He told BBC Radio 5 live (h/t BBC Sport): "If they have to say cheerio to those two players, then that is the right decision."
"They have been overindulged at times this season and they let Arsenal down in the period when they lost twice to Bayern Munich, conceding 10 goals. That is the level of the problem.
"The manager needs to make some really tough decisions now. Sanchez's contract needs to get 100 per cent secured. Is that going to happen? Will Ozil leave?
"I am sure both players want to go elsewhere because they want to win the Champions League, win the Premier League and maybe they do not feel it can be done at Arsenal. The club is bigger than two individuals."
The north Londoners will relish the news Ozil and his representatives are now willing to talk in any case, but depending on how high his expectations are, a new deal may not be close to being signed just yet.