Barcelona have reportedly been told they would be able to sign Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil for a fee of €20 million (£18 million) in the upcoming January transfer window.
Here's a look at how the story has been reported, per Sport Witness:
It's also relayed by Mundo Deportivo (h/t Annie Eaves of Sport Witness) that Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has given Ozil "direct permission" to find a new club in January, while the report also claims his agent Erkut Sogut has held talks with Barcelona.
As noted in the initial report, there appears to be little chance of the 29-year-old signing a contract extension at the Emirates Stadium, with his current deal to expire at the end of the campaign.
It means teams will be able to negotiate a deal with Ozil from January with a view to a free transfer in the summer. Alternatively, Arsenal have a final opportunity to cash in on the former Real Madrid man in the upcoming window to prevent losing him for nothing in the summer.
While there have always been discussions about the effectiveness of Ozil at Arsenal, for that kind of fee there's no doubt he'd represent value for money. As noted by Match of the Day, since arriving at the club the German has been the key creative outlet for the Gunners:
This term his form has been inconsistent, though there have been times when Ozil has shown what he's all about.
The win over Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday is a good example. In what was a ferocious encounter, the class and composure of Ozil stood out over the course of the 90 minutes, as he knitted attacks together well for Arsenal.
There was also a work rate present in the playmaker's game that has not been seen that often. As noted by Cristian Nyari, it appears some audiences would prefer to see the German do the gritty parts of the game as well as the graceful:
If he was to make the switch to Barcelona that wouldn't necessarily be the case, as the Blaugrana have always placed an emphasis on technical qualities.
In the past a move to the Camp Nou may not have made total sense for Ozil, as the Barcelona side have operated in a system that doesn't accommodate a classic No. 10. But new manager Ernesto Valverde is a lot more versatile in the way the side is set up.
And as noted by World Soccer Talk's Kartik Krishnaiyer, when he is in the mood the German can be a force of nature:
Kartik Krishnaiyer @kkfla737
Today has been a stark reminder that on his day Ozil is still one of the most influential players on the planet. It's not a coincidence nor based on reputation that he's one of the first names on the team sheet for the World Champions, Germany. Influence isn't just scoring goals.
Arsenal will be planning for life after Ozil at this point and will already have some alternatives lined up. However, the club has a huge decision to make on whether to let him go in January or for nothing at the end of the campaign.
Barcelona may seek to capitalise in January and someone of the German's class would give the team a huge boost midseason. Still, with the UEFA Europa League, FA Cup and Premier League still to play for, it'd be no surprise to see the Gunners refuse any midseason interest.