Wenger rules out premature Ozil and Alexis exits


Arsene Wenger says he has no intention of selling Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez in January and that it would take something ‘unbelievable’ for that to change.

Speculation has mounted in recent weeks that Arsenal could be tempted to cash in on the Chile striker and Germany midfielder in January as they look to recoup some of the £78 million paid out to Barcelona and Real Madrid.

Both players will be allowed to talk to foreign clubs about a free move next summer when the window opens in five weeks time.

Speaking ahead of Wednesday’s clash with Huddersfield, the boss was adamant that he’ll be able to call on the duo for the first half of 2018 at least.

“I rule it out [selling them],” he said. “I don’t think every day about that.

“As long as they are here they give their best for the club. In my head they stay until the end of the season.

“Unless something unbelievable happens I don’t see that changes.”

As the clock ticks down on their contracts it does look increasingly likely that Ozil and Alexis will depart for free in the summer. While the boss hasn’t yet given up hope of persuading them to stay, he admits the ball isn’t in his court.

“I am not the only one to decide that,” he said. “They have to decide that as well.”

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51 Comments on "Wenger rules out premature Ozil and Alexis exits"

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Good news, the disruption to the second half of the season would be massive, even if top players come in. I’d rather do well this season, recruit replacements early in the summer (though would love it if they decided to stay) and go forward from there.


Ok the contrary the disruption caused by them talking to other clubs and the media hype around that could be equally damaging. If they don’t want to play for us they should leave.

SB Still

Rock and a hard place for us.

With all this going on and a bad start to the league by us, we are 4 points from 2nd place, after 13 games – having played everyone in the current top 6 except one.

So, the squad is pretty good despite the CM and CB positions to be addressed.

If only the club is willing to address that and these two stars realise that they are already in a good place…sigh!


Have you really thought that through? Everything about the post you’re replying to is spot on.

It’s difficult to arrange proper replacements for these two in January.

Dr Whale

But with them in the team, we are still hammered 4.0. Without them, we did won some matches. My point is with or without them even without replacement, we will still play the way we do or even better. RVP, Fabregas, Nasri, Thienry had changed game from a losing end to winning. But these two guys, I can’t remember them doing any.


What about Alexis and Mesut’s combined 39 goals and 15 assists last season then?


39 goals and 25 assists even.. Dr whale

Heavenly Chapecoense

Henry alone was close in both departments.

jack jack jack

We should sign him then.


There’s something about keeping players that don’t want to play for our club that doesn’t sit well with me, we are above that. I do agree that it’s going to cause a huge disruption if they leave now. However, just imagine Ozil signs a pre-contract with United in January for example. It’s going to cause an outrage from our fan base.

Fact is they should have left early in the previous window and we should have shown intent in finding replacements. Like SB Still mentioned, Rock and a hard place for us.


You can’t sign pre contracts with clubs in the premier league, if your’e playing for one.


Unless they are on the transfer list they cannot talk to other clubs.


Yes Martin! No club talks to any player unless they are transfer listed. Maybe arsene and his values but no one else

Cyprus The Immortal Gooner
Cyprus The Immortal Gooner

I agree with this. Being realistic we have no chance of winning the league so 50-60m would be important to sign new players when they leave (since they have no intention of staying)

Don Cazorleone

Why are we talking about needing the money from their sales to re-invest when we ended the last transfer window in profit.

Theo Layder

I think under the circumstances keeping them is spot on. I am not sure there are places for them to go in January , and not for much money anyway. I guess maybe Bayern but not much after that. PSG, Man City does not need them , most of the other “Big” teams are not desperate for talent. Hopefully we can sign them. None of those teams are going to offer much.


I think there’s even a case for buying in January. We know these guys are going.

So I think we should be looking to try and get at least someone over the line in January because its going to be so tough to replace both of them in the summer.


If we buy the right missing pieces then I think they may choose to stay. We’re always a couple of signings away from being a top team, so if the club signals intent and brings in a couple of really good signings in the Jan window then I think Mesut will stay, and maybe Alexis also.

Andy Mack

We had to sell some players to make space in our squad, so I can’t see us buying 1st team players in Jan unless we sell some first. Or maybe we can find a way to increase the registered players above 25…

Teryima Adi

To be or not to be, that’s the question.

spanish gooner

I don’t see any reason why they would want to leave. By June they can have their pick of clubs across Europe and have time to settle in, have a full preseason and earn a higher signing on fee because no transfer fee would need to be paid


Alexis would. It’s a World Cup year, so Özil will not have a full pre-season

Declan M

Still hold out a faint hope that Mesut may stay. Let’s just hope the club doesn’t get into this situation again… Lol.

Arse City Blues

Maybe the new guy from Dortmund will help your dream come true..

Andy Mack

Unfortunately it does look like this will be a regular thing with all top clubs unless we/they can throw money at a player every couple of years on a new contract extension.
Although we’ve the biggest names in this situation, most other clubs have it to some degree now.


It’s all well and good keeping them both until the summer but what happens then? We bid 90 million for Lemar based on getting 55 million for Sanchez, without that type of money we won’t be buying top quality replacements. It’s highly likely that player prices will have increased again next summer which will put them even further out of reach for us. Winning the league has already passed so we only have the cups left and a possible top 4 place left. Surely it would be better to get replacements in now to give them 5 months with the team and also give some of the better youngsters a chance to shine with experienced players around them.

Hectare Bellsaring

Wouldn’t make sense to sell either in January unless we immediately used the funds to bring in Lemar for example.

Fully expect Sanchez to leave next summer which will be a shame as he’s been the best player at the club since he signed but he’s obviously not overly happy here anymore.

Ozil however hasn’t become the player we all hoped he would, and even if he was inclined to stay he’s not worth the big money anymore – turning up to a game once every 10 matches or so just doesn’t cut it I’m afraid.


Yes and providing more assists and chances created than any other player in the Premiership

Cliff Bastin

We win the epl Europa double, these two announce contract extensions one day later, statues are prepared.

J Dizzle

Both players will be allowed to talk to English clubs about a free move next summer too…


They can’t talk to English clubs till June, its January for foreign clubs


“zero eyes”? Did AW really said that?! Lol


I think this is just to bump up te valuation. I think it makes sense to sell one of the 2 if we can get a replacement. Top 4 is the only expectation this season anyways

Theo Layder

I agree with the evaluation take, Wenger wants Arsenal to appear to other teams this way , keep the price as high as possible.


Maybe he does, maybe he doesn’t. Who knows with things like that anymore?

What we need to focus on is to win our next game to try and overtake Chelsea who sit only one point above us. Who’s coming or going is irrelevant at the moment.


Lol persuade them to stay!

They are leaving because of you!

Hectare Bellsaring

On the contrary they joined because of him.


And after working with him dont want to stay


I am OK with not selling either or both last Summer or this Winter as long as we will invest properly this Summer to replace them. My big worry has always been that we keep them all year, both leave on a free transfer and then we don’t really spend to replace them.


With these two, do we make more from selling them in January or do we have a better chance of qualifying for CL(probably worth more than their transfer fee’s) with them and as a result have a better chance of recruiting top players in the summer? I would say keep them, they’ve proven to be professional enough thus far and ultimately isn’t finishing as high up the table as we can is what is best for the club?

Christopher Wreh

I am worried. Let’s face it, both won’t be with us next year and we’ll have no money from them that we can reinvest. I am trying to enjoy what time we have left of these two glorious footballers, but it’s niggling in my mind that next season we could be up a certain creek with no paddle whatsoever.

It’s positive that we look to be employing some wise heads behind the scenes but who signs off the budget when it comes to offer time? That prick upstairs, that’s who. And as long as he calls the shots I just can’t see us competing at the level I so desperately want us at.

Man Manny

Sensible decision on all fronts. With them in the team, we have as good a chance as anyone else of making CL next season. That way, even if they leave, we’ll be an attractive proposition for top players.
Best case scenario is that both become persuaded to stay by the promise they see in this team.


Wenger retires end of season(not so big about honoring Contract presently)…has advised Ozil’s and Sanchez’s reps…Joachim Lowe is appointed…encourages both to stay and gets Draxler on board…sorted.

Andy Mack

You want a new manager who’s never been successful as a club manager…

Heard it all before

“Unless something unbelievable happens”

i.e something totally believable.


Wenger can’t say much else.

Expect us to be furiously looking to buy some players similarly coming to the end of their contracts this summer.

Which is an ever increasing number.

The obvious answer is to develop youth, but to do that means taking a risk in Premier League games. Something Wenger has more experience than anyone else still managing in the Premiership.

To anyone wondering if we will ever be able to replace Ozil and Sanchez with like replacements, should also begin to wonder how we will replace Wenger with someone with similar stature. I doubt any manager with a few titles in his CV would even contemplate us with our current transfer spending and ability to beat Bayern or Milan to a signature.

The only ones will be mercenaries, who know that a soft target is one which relies on one or two star players and with no intention of increasing that number. Meaning they have the bargaining upper hand.

Board take note!! You are the soft target of every agent in europe right now.

Andy Mack

I see this as AWs way of telling other clubs that we won’t accept silly cheap bids for them. Nothing more than that. If they stay then we’ll take the hit, but we aren’t giving another team a super cheap deal just to make a few quid.

Swiss Gooner

Standard Wenger press spin. Was he not to one who said he wasn’t going to sell Sanchez during the summer only to try and sell him in the 11th hour.

January transfer window is very hit and miss but if we are going to do something then why not try to have our cake and eat it. Go out, get a player like Lemar or Fekir or someone young on the edge of an international breakthrough like Kluivert and treat Jan to Apr like an extension of pre-season and get them into the team without the pressure of being the big summer buy

Andy Mack

He didn’t ‘try’ to sell him.
We got an offer that we would have accepted if we could have lined up a replacement.
If we’d tried to sell him then we’d have either had the replacement lined up, or done it and sorted out a replacement after.
So not quite the same thing.

Swiss Gooner

Sorry poor choice of words with try and sell him, you are correct, we did not try and sell him. We accepted a bid after saying we would not sell him all summer giving us now time to sign a replacement and making us once again look like the Chuckle Brothers of the transfer market.

So forgive me when I do not believe the quote “Unless something unbelievable happens I don’t see that changes” as the unbelievable thing is obviously someone offering money for him!

bob davis

Yeah, but you said Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain would stay and he left didn’t he…

I won’t be surprised if they both left us. One going to the red of Manchester and the other going to the sky blue of Manchester.