The debate is on and the argument is becoming boisterous as regards whether the 28-year-old playmaker who has been heavily vilified and lampooned in the media and amongst club fans this season deserves a new contract worth a hefty £300,000 per week.
Mesut Ozil is Arsenal’s top earner on £140,000 a week but is locked in a protracted contract stand-off after refusing to sign an extension worth around £250,000 a week with the Gunners, with his current deal to expire at the end of next campaign.
The Germany midfielder feels he deserves closer to £300,000 and talks are due to resume at the end of the season but there is a feeling behind the scenes at the Emirates Stadium that such a deal is not value for money.
Ozil has under-performed this season, particularly in recent weeks as Arsenal’s league form dipped.
His latest poor display against Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday drew criticism from supporters who have previously stuck by him. And the former Real Madrid man’s displays have not gone unnoticed by the coaching staff.
Likewise, Gunners sources have indicated that there are lingering frustrations regarding Ozil over his effort in training which has led to the club thinking perhaps his mind is elsewhere and have been reluctant to increase his contract offer amid growing concerns over his commitment.
Arsenal will finish the Premier League season below their north London rivals for the first time in 22 years and Sunday’s 2-0 derby defeat by Tottenham further attested to the fact that Mauricio Pochettino side’s dominance of north London this term is no fluke.