Mesut Ozil's £350,000-a-Week Arsenal Salary Is 'Not Important,' Says Unai Emery

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistDecember 22, 2018

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 19:  Unai Emery, Manager of Arsenal reacts during the Carabao Cup Quarter Final match between Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur at Emirates Stadium on December 19, 2018 in London, United Kingdom.  (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Arsenal head coach Unai Emery has revealed he does not know Mesut Ozil's salary because it has no impact on whether he gets in the side. 

Ozil, who reportedly earns £350,000 per week at the Emirates Stadium, was controversially dropped for the Gunners' 2-0 Carabao Cup quarter-final defeat to Tottenham Hotspur on Wednesday.

He was restored to the starting XI for Saturday's clash against Burnley, but Emery said ahead of the match that no player is guaranteed a spot in the side and that he makes decisions based on players' commitment, per Luke Brown of The Independent:

"For me the player's salary is not important. I don't know the player's salary because, for me, it is the same—I want to give every player the same conversation or the same decision to play or not to play. The most important thing for me is the commitment.

"And when I decide on who plays or not, it is because of a tactical decision. So if you are asking is it different because one player is on a higher salary than the other, then for me it is the same.

"I do not think about how people think outside [the club]. My focus and my plan is on the squad having the best match. If Mesut is in the starting XI, the same. I trust in him to help us with his quality."

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 16: Mesut Ozil of Arsenal on the bench during the Premier League match between Southampton FC and Arsenal FC at St Mary's Stadium on December 16, 2018 in Southampton, United Kingdom. (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)
Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

The Arsenal manager refused to be drawn on whether Ozil, 30, would be available for purchase or loan in January, saying: "I am not thinking about this situation."

But rumours abound that the north London side are ready to sell the player they bought from Real Madrid for £42.4 million in 2013, with the Mirror's John Cross reporting the club will listen to offers for the German.

Since Ozil moved to the Premier League, he has been something of an enigma.

He has fielded almost constant criticism for not working hard enough or putting in good performances in the biggest games, and he has never been among the Premier League's biggest stars.

But statistically, he contributes massively:

And a handful of times a season, he produces a performance of genuine world-class quality, as he did against Leicester City back in October when he ran in the show in a 3-1 win, netting one goal and providing an assist.

Emery does not feel he is untouchable, and it is clear Ozil will have to impress him on a week-to-week basis to earn consistent starts.

Former manager Arsene Wenger signed Ozil for Arsenal, and the playmaker's future at the club is unclear with the Frenchman no longer in charge.

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