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Mesut Özil’s contract talks “going in the right direction”

I guess that depends on how you feel about Mesut Özil.

Arsenal v AFC Bournemouth - Premier League Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images

Mesut Özil is currently one of the most polarizing players Arsenal employ. Those fans that like him tend to see what he does off the ball as validation for our opinion - he does a ton of work that doesn’t really get a lot of notice, and while he doesn’t score a lot, Arsenal are a vastly different team without him. Those who don’t like him, on the other hand, see a guy who doesn’t do much of note and they wonder why he’s still a part of the team, much less want him to be a part of the team in the future.

Özil didn’t leave this summer, which means that since he’s out of contract at the end of June, he is able to sign with another European club in January should he desire to. Arsenal would like him to not desire to, though, and have been in talks with his agent about re-signing the German so he can continue his Arsenal career.

That agent, Erkut Sogut, had this to say today about those talks:

“Besiktas are interested in Mesut,” he said, “but there is no official proposal that has reached us. Even so, he wants to play in Premier League for at least 2-3 years more. Our contacts with Arsenal continue and we are going in a positive direction.”

“He wants to play in Premier League for 2-3 years more” is a good thing. I don’t see any reason not to re-sign Özil if he wants to stay - if for no other reason than to break the automatic “players always leave on a free when they can” narrative. There’s obviously a lot of time between now and June, and January will be interesting, but if Arsenal can tie up Özil for a few more seasons, I think that’s a pretty good return on the gamble of not re-signing him this past summer, is it not?