Thierry Henry has accused Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil of “holding Arsenal hostage” with their contract demands, and has expressed his doubt that Arsene Wenger will agree to pay that amount
Both Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez have been locked in contract talks with Arsenal for several months with the duo said to be holding out for wages of upto £300,000-per-week and £400,000-per-week respectively, the amount Sanchez has reportedly been offered in China.
Sanchez recently said that he was happy at Arsenal and wanted to stay but added that the club had to “show confidence” in him which is usually code for demanding higher wages.
Ozil has been silent on his demands but it was recently reported that he had asked Arsenal to sign fellow German international Julian Draxler as a part of his contract negotiations.
Thierry Henry feels that the duo are holding Arsenal hostage but has admitted that they are vital to the future of the club :
“Those two players are vital for the future of the club, they have to secure that deal. But to what extent? I don’t know if Arsene is going to want to pay those numbers. But if they don’t sign, who are you going to bring after that? What’s the future? At the moment they are holding the club hostage.” he told Sky Sports.
He also said that if they were paid what they want, he expected them to score hat-tricks every week as he would expect players on those kinds of wages to do :
“At the moment they are holding the club hostage. They are amazing but if they are on that amount of money, I want a hat-trick every week – and also when there’s no game! You need to be in a situation where you’ve won something already for the club to ask for that amount of money.”
Arsene Wenger has previously said that the negotiations with the pair are not all about the money but it appears that this is obviously a deciding factor. It is also said that the duo are seeking assurances that Arsenal will invest in order to challenge consistently for major honours before committing to the club.
Wenger is insistent that they will not be sold, however, and has even said that he is prepared to let them leave on a free after 18 months – when both their contracts expire – instead of selling them at any point. It appears that this is a story that is going to rumble on, but it seems unclear if it will reach the resolution that Arsene Wenger desires.