£350,000-a-week Ozil becomes Arsenal’s highest paid player
After more than a year of negotiations, an offer of £350,000-a-week has been accepted by Ozil that will see him become the focal point around a new array of attacking options that also now include Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Alexandre Lacazette and Henrikh Mkhitaryan.
The time span of Ozil’s deal mirrors that of Aubameyang – who will be paid around £180,000-a-week and represents a further major statement of change and intent following Arsenal’s decision to sell their three main goal scorers of recent years in Theo Walcott, Sanchez and Olivier Giroud.
News of the Ozil deal emerged in the German newspaper Bild yesterday and, while Arsenal say that is not yet formally signed, the expectation is that it will be announced and confirmed within the next few days.
Ozil had been expected to wait until the summer before deciding his next move but, even amid interest from Manchester United, he was keen to stay in London.
The signing of Aubameyang is understood to have been a factor in Ozil’s decision but Arsenal also currently offer him more than any rival. With his existing contract expiring in June, Ozil has been free to speak with clubs outside the Premier League this month.
Arsenal are also trying to tie down Jack Wilshere to a new contract following his improvement in form this season.
While Ozil has committed his future to Arsenal, Olivier Giroud has moved to Chelsea, with Michy Batshuayi leaving Stamford Bridge to join Borussia Dortmund on loan, according to irishtimes.com.
The Blues announced the arrival of France striker, Giroud on an 18-month-contract and Batshuayi’s departure until the end of the season.
Giroud said on the Chelsea website: “Chelsea is one of the biggest teams in the Premier League. They have won maybe the most trophies in the last six or seven years. It’s a massive club and I am proud to sign for Chelsea, and I’m looking forward to playing.”
Giroud has struggled to hold down a regular starting spot since joining Arsenal from Montpellier in 2012, but Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia said: “Olivier is a proven talent at the top level and we are very pleased to call him a Chelsea player.
“He has scored goals regularly throughout his career and is well accustomed to English football and the Premier League. We are sure he will be a fantastic signing.”
Batshuayi arrives in Dortmund as a direct replacement for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who completed his move to Arsenal earlier yesterday.
The Belgian is also after regular football to make sure of his place in Belgium’s World Cup squad, telling the Dortmund website: “In order to achieve my big goal, I want to play as much as possible and score many goals. The World Cup takes place in the summer.”
Giroud scored 105 goals in 253 appearances for Arsenal.
Meanwhile, Riyad Mahrez’s bid to leave Leicester City has crumbled. It was reported that Manchester City made a final offer of £65 million for Mahrez, but had to, pull out of a deal
Mahrez himself reportedly submitted a transfer request in order to try and push through a late move.
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