Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has opened the door for Mesut Ozil to return to the squad in January.
The former Germany international playmaker has been frozen out of the Spaniard’s plans since March and is not involved in either of the Gunners’ squads for the Premier League or the Europa League.
In the meantime, he has been involved in a battle with the club on social media, undermining them by offering to pay the wages of mascot Gunnersaurus, who was sacked by the club earlier this year as they made cutbacks due to the Covid-19 crisis.
Ozil’s deal is up at the end of the season and his Arsenal career seemed over – but there may be another twist to come in the tale.
“He’s not in the squad right now,” Arteta told the press on Saturday ahead of a Premier League meeting with Burnley on Sunday. “I’m focusing just on the players we have here.
“But, whatever happens in January, we have some time to decide.”
Former Gunners boss Arsene Wenger recently spoke out in defence of the former Real Madrid ace, claiming he is not a difficult character to manage.
“He was not difficult to manage. He was a guy who had a special quality as a creative player and needed to have fun,” the legendary former Arsenal boss told ESPN.
“He is an artist and these guys are a bit more sensitive.
“They need support and an environment that pushes them to give their best.”
Wenger offered Arteta some advice to get the best out of Ozil.
“You have two ways to see a football team. You get everybody to do the same. The same intensity of work, the same defensive work or you find a compromise,” he added.
“You have a more creative player in the team who can do less defensive work but you build a team around him who can compensate for these deficiencies.
“That is what you have to think about.”