• Martinez threatens to quit if not given more games
Mesut Ozil has reportedly been offered an £18 million pay-off from Arsenal to end his Emirates nightmare, thesun.co.uk reports. The £350,000-a-week midfielder is unwanted by Gunners boss Mikel Arteta.
The Germany international has just one year left on his contract and could easily decide not to kick a ball for the first team next season and still pick up his wages. But the Gunners now plan to pay his contract up in full to get him out of the club.
Arsenal are reportedly ready to make him an offer to pay him off. Or if not then to subsidise his £350,000-a-week wages so he can move to another club on loan.
But a series of poor performances for Arteta has convinced the Spaniard he must move the player on. The last straw came when he refused to take a pay cut due to the coronavirus pandemic.
He plans to off-load midfielders Matteo Guendouzi, Lucas Torreira and Henrikh Mkhitaryan. Utility player Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Greek defender Sokratis and Bosnian left-back Sead Kolasinac are also surplus to requirements.
While Ozil is near the Arsenal exit door, Chelsea’s Willian could be the next big player on the Gunners’ team sheet.
Arsenal are close to completing the signing of the Brazilian on a three-year deal, beating off competition from Barcelona and Inter Miami
The 32-year-old leaves Stamford Bridge at the end of his contract after a seven-year spell, with Chelsea only willing to offer him a two-year deal rather than the player’s desired three years.
He wrote an open letter to fans confirming his exit following Chelsea’s defeat to Bayern in the last 16 of the Champions League.
“They were seven wonderful years. In August 2013 when I received the offer from Chelsea, I was convinced that this was where I had to play,” he wrote.
“Today I am certain that it was the best of decisions. There were so many happy times, some sad, there were trophies and it was always very intense,” he said.
Meanwhile, Emiliano Martinez has warned Arsenal that he could leave unless he gets regular game time next season.
The 27-year-old proved to be a more than adequate replacement for goalkeeper Bernd Leno when the German got injured in June.
Arsenal lost just twice in the 11 games he started following Leno’s injury against Brighton as Martinez helped them to a 14th FA Cup triumph.
The Argentinian has waited a decade for a sustained run in the first team after joining the Gunners as a 17-year-old in 2010.
The goalkeeper has aspirations to play for Argentina and is willing to move to achieve that goal.
“I have shown the club that I can play for them and when I return next season I need to have more games,” Martinez told Argentine radio station Continental. “That is the only way I will stay at Arsenal.
“My target is to consolidate my place with Arsenal and to reach the Argentinian national team as number one.”
Martinez has only made 37 total appearances for the Gunners in his decade-long spell for the club, 23 of which have come this season.
Arsenal are reportedly set to give him a contract extension, but he may refuse if he cannot be guaranteed more first-team football.