‘The only way to do it was face-to-face’: Arsenal technical director Edu reveals how he told Mesut Ozil he’d be AXED from the Europa League squad as club look to rip up his £350,000-per-week deal
Ozil – who earns £350,000-per-week – was the most notable absentee from Arsenal’s 25-man Europa League squad alongside William Saliba and Sokratis Papastathopoulos, and the German playmaker’s days at the Emirates are numbered.
And Edu has revealed that he told Ozil face-to-face that he would play no part in Arsenal’s upcoming European campaign this season after falling massively out of favour under Arteta.
German star Mesut Ozil has become the forgotten man at Arsenal after falling out of favour
He said: ‘We needed to manage the number of foreign players in the squad because we are only allowed to have 17 on our list.
‘I talked to Mikel about the players who were probably going to be left out and we discussed how to treat that challenging situation.
‘The way we did it was to sit down with the players concerned and to be open with them and I also spoke to their agents.
‘The only way to do that was face-to-face and to clearly explain why Mikel has made that decision. And I think we did it quite well.’
Edu and Mikel Arteta told Ozil face-to-face that he would be left out of Europa League squad
The Gunners are looking to get Ozil off their books quickly, with Sportsmail reporting that they will re-open talks with the midfielder ahead of the January transfer window over ending his mega-money deal early.
The Gunners, it is understood, approached Ozil about reaching a settlement agreement for the final nine months of his contract over the past fortnight but the attempts proved unsuccessful.
The 31-year-old is said to want virtually all the remaining £13million on his deal.
It is now hugely unlikely that Ozil will agree to an early exit from Arsenal before the transfer window re-opens in January.
Ozil is set to miss out on Arsenal’s 25-man Premier League squad as well this season
Being without a club during the current period poses obvious problems for players with regards to training.
But the Gunners are ready to make another offer to the World Cup winner with a view to removing him from their wage bill in January.
The prospect of Ozil playing much first-team football before then look remote.
After it was confirmed that the German had been omitted from Arsenal’s Europa League squad, Ozil is also expected to be left out of the club’s 25-man Premier League party.