Arsene Wenger has insisted that negotiations with Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez are not only about the money involved
Arsenal have been in negotiations with the two superstars for some time now, but there has reportedly been no progress on the deals just yet. Alexis Sanchez has been repeatedly linked with moves away from the club, with both Manchester City and Juventus apparently keeping a keen eye on his contract negotiations.
Mesut Ozil has also been linked with a move away. The German midfielder recently refused to rule out a return to his former club Real Madrid, and this has left Arsenal fans everywhere nervous about the progress on both his and Sanchez’s contracts.
Many former players who are now pundits – most notably Rio Ferdinand – have insisted that Arsenal should not negotiate anymore and just pay the duo what they want, but Arsene Wenger feels that the negotiations are not just down to the money involved.
“We are in negotiations, yes,” Wenger said, according to the Daily Mirror.
“The players have 18 months away from the end of their contracts, so it’s normal.”
“I would like to say the luxury of the modern game should be that it’s not only about the money because the players make good money at this level anyway, wherever they play.”
“I believe, personally – maybe I am a bit naïve – that it’s more about getting to meet the players’ needs. That’s about the way the club has values, the way the club has ambition, the way the club respects the players. So I think, for me, that is more important nowadays and an important ingredient for every player to consider. The money is good everywhere for everybody.”
Wenger may be right about that, but the fact is that both Sanchez and Ozil are at the peak of their careers and unless they see Arsenal significantly strengthen with ambitious moves and realistically challenge for major honours, it may not matter just how large the wage packet they are offered is.
The departure of either player would be a huge blow for Arsenal, as they have been key to Arsenal’s continued presence at the top of the Premier League table and their impressive performance in other competitions this season.
Ozil currently has 8 goals and 4 assists in 18 appearances for the Gunners, while Alexis Sanchez has a very impressive 13 goals and 6 assists in 19 appearances. Both Sanchez and Ozil are currently contracted with the Gunners until the summer of 2018.