LONDON – Mesut Ozil insists he wants to stay at Arsenal next season, despite the club’s desire to cash in and get their top earner off the wage bill.
The German, who earns £350 000 a week, is one of many star players Arsenal will put up for sale this summer as they look to raise funds for manager Unai Emery to spend in the transfer market.
Ozil will return to the squad for tonight’s Europa League semi-final first leg against Valencia after missing Sunday’s defeat at Leicester.
Although he does not want to leave the Emirates, he recognises that the decision is ultimately down to the club.
Asked if he wants to stay, Ozil said: “Absolutely. I’ve got two more years on my contract. I don’t know after that, but I’ve got two years left.
“Yes (I am happy here). Why not? I’m 30 now, I’ve still got years in front of me. It’s down to the club as well of course.”
Ozil has been used sparingly by Emery this season, but, asked whether he has any issues with his manager, the World Cup winner replied: “Definitely not. There’s always speculation, everyone inside knew that our situation is positive.
“It’s frustrating. I want to play in every game. Through injury I’ve missed games, but that’s football. The coach makes decisions, which means you may not start, but you have to keep going.”
One player definitely leaving this summer is Aaron Ramsey, who is joining Juventus on a free transfer.
The 28-year-old midfielder, who has suffered a hamstring injury, confirmed that he has played his last game for the club.
“It saddens me to say that the game against Napoli was my last in an Arsenal shirt,” he said in a post on Instagram.
“I am really disappointed not to play until the end and give everything for the club. Unfortunately it’s out of my hands, but I wanted to say thank you for your support.
“It has been a journey, on and off the field. I was a spotty young kid coming in, and I’m leaving a man, married, father of three boys and full of pride and good memories that I will treasure.
“It will be emotional this weekend – my last game at home. I look forward to seeing you there, and thank you all again from the bottom of my heart for everything.”
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It saddens me to say that the game against Napoli was my last game in an Arsenal shirt. Unfortunately it left me with an injury that rules me out of the remaining games. I am really disappointed not to play until the end and give everything for the club while I am still an Arsenal player. Unfortunately it’s out of my hands but I wanted to say thank you to the fans for your support. It has been a journey, on and off the field, and so much has happened in 11 years. I was a spotty young kid coming in and I’m leaving a man, married, father of three boys and full of pride and good memories that I will treasure. It will be emotional this weekend - my last game at home. I Look forward to seeing you there and thank you all again from the bottom of my heart for everything #arsenal #lastgame
A post shared by Aaron Ramsey (@aaronramsey) on
Ramsey and Petr Cech, who is retiring at the end of the season, will be given a guard of honour on Sunday’s clash with Brighton – the last match at the Emirates this season.
Club captain Laurent Koscielny praised Ramsey’s commitment to the Gunners despite his pending move, intimating that other departing players have not shown as much professionalism.
“What I like about Aaron is we know he signs for Juventus, but he is still a professional and always fights for the club.
“Sometimes you have players who have stopped fighting for this team, but he has loved this club, and that is why he stayed at 100 percent. It shows a great mentality and character.”
Emery also praised Ramsey. “For me, it was a good experience to work with every player and with him especially, because he can transmit his energy and he showed me his heart is red with Arsenal,’ said the Spaniard.
“He was in a good moment when he had this injury. I said to him one month ago that I wanted to do something important in his last matches with us. It will not be with him on the pitch, but he is still with us.’Daily Mail