Wednesday, May 24, 2017

No rush on new deals for Sanchez and Ozil – Wenger

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 23 Dec 2015

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Arsene Wenger is willing to wait until the end of the season to hold contract talks with Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil so as not to derail Arsenal’s title challenge.

Sanchez and Ozil are arguably the Gunners’ key players, but Wenger believes full concentration should currently be given to their league situation.

Asked about new deals for the pair, he said at Wednesday’s media conference: “We’ll deal with that later in the season. At the moment we focus more on the present.”

Ozil joined Arsenal from Real Madrid in September 2013 and is currently enjoying a rich vein of form, leading the Premier League assist charts with 15 in 16 appearances, eight clear of Leicester City’s Riyad Mahrez and Everton winger Gerard Deulofeu. He has also netted four times in all competitions.

His current deal expires in June 2018 and the Germany international told Kicker earlier this week that he was very happy in London.

“There is no rush to sign a new contract,” Ozil said.

“My current deal runs until 2018. That is still two-and-a-half years. There are no talks at the moment.

“I can only say that I am very happy in London. My decision to leave Real Madrid for Arsenal was the right one.

“There has not been a single day, apart from whenever I was injured, that I did not feel great here.”

Sanchez has been a revelation since moving to the Emirates Stadium from Barcelona shortly after the 2014 World Cup, prompting speculation over a return to Spain with Real Madrid.

The Chile international is currently sidelined with a hamstring injury which is set to keep him out until the second week of January.

Although Wenger concedes his absence is far from ideal, he is hoping other members of the squad can step up.

He added: “We can do that [cope without him] but sometimes you have injuries in the same areas.

“It’s not so much the number but the way you have injuries. Now, we do not have Sanchez but Theo Walcott came back.

“That is important, that you don’t lose two together at the same time.

“We have nobody back for Southampton [on Saturday]. It will be approximately the same players.”

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