Gunners head coach Unai Emery has claimed he is “not thinking” about rumours linking Mesut Ozil with a move away from the Emirates.
Speaking in his weekly press briefing, the 47-year-old confirmed reports from earlier in the day that he had no immediate plans of transferring his highest-paid player.
However, Emery has demanded more “consistency” from the German midfielder, stating: “He has helped us sometimes this year with good performances and others not good. After these two weeks working, maybe he can be okay for us.”
Ozil has been missing for Arsenal’s last four games – two of which were through injury, but the other seemingly tactical reasons.
He could, however, now return to action the Gunners’ crunch London derby with Chelsea on Saturday. Emery said Ozil could face Chelsea on Saturday, adding: “He didn’t play the last matches but to me, he’s just like any other player. This Saturday he can be with us if he’s okay. Now? He’s training consistently with his work over the past two weeks and I think he can be.”
The 30-year-old has started just 12 of his side’s league games this term, scoring three goals and one assist from 943 minutes of action. Many have questioned whether the Gunners should cut their losses and move on from a player commanding £350,000 per week and having little return to show for it.
Following his controversial exit from the Germany national setup after a disappointing World Cup campaign, Ozil started the season with a point to prove. Two goals in six games and a number of man-of-the-match performances suggested he was on the way to regaining some of the form that prompted Arsenal to sign him from Real Madrid in 2013.
Despite an inconsistent run over the past two seasons, Emery seems keen to retain the services of his number 10. “I’m not thinking about that,” Emery said of transfer reports. “I’m thinking about how he can help us this year with good performances.”