In Brief

Arsenal transfer news: Mesut Ozil, Isco, Aaron Ramsey, Gary Cahill

German playmaker wants to stay and fight for his place but Ramsey looks set to exit

Ozil out?

Mesut Ozil is pushing back against suggestions that he might start the new year at a new club, according to reports. 

ESPN claims that the German midfielder has “ruled out a January loan move and is fully intent on winning back his starting position in the Arsenal team”.

Sources close to Ozil set the broadcaster straight about the player’s goals for 2019 amid rumours that he might exit from the Emirates this month. Absent from the side that thrashed Fulham yesterday, Ozil was last seen when he was substituted at half-time in the Boxing Day draw at Brighton - a game in which he was hauled off at the break for the first time since signing for the club six years ago. 

Swap deal for Isco

ESPN reports that Arsenal boss Unai Emery is refusing to discuss Ozil’s future. But The Sun describes the German as “a financial liability” whose £350,000-a-week salary is proving an immense headache to the Arsenal hierarchy.

The 30-year-old knows that his contract, which he penned last season, means he “holds all the power and is not about to walk away from a deal which is due to see him earn £45m by the time it runs out”, the newspaper says.

The Gunners would reportedly love to offload the workshy German, but Ozil has rejected the idea of a move to Inter Milan, and an attempt to arrange a swap deal for the Spanish side’s Isco is said to have been shot down because the latter doesn’t want to leave Spain.

Juventus tailing Ramsey

Another Arsenal midfielder seemingly off to pastures new is Aaron Ramsey. Citing Italian media, The Sun says that Juventus have offered the Welshman a £138,000-a-week deal spread over four years. 

The 28-year-old, who scored one of Arsenal’s goals in their 4-1 win over Fulham yesterday, “would earn more than £7m-per-year if he plays 70% of matches for the Serie A side”, the paper adds.

The starting salary for Ramsey would be £5.8m, with the ace pocketing £6.3m if he features in half of the matches. The Italian champions are reportedly “in pole position to land the midfielder”, but Bayern Munich, Real, Barcelona, Inter and Paris Saint-Germain are also keen on the Welsh playmaker. Ramsey’s preference, however, is believed to be Juventus.

Motormouth Morgan mocked

Celebrity Arsenal fan and professional motormouth Piers Morgan has expressed scepticism that six of Europe’s powerhouses were pursuing Ramsey, tweeting: “Could every single person in the world who genuinely believes Aaron Ramsey is currently being ‘hotly pursued’ by Real Madrid, Juventus, PSG, Bayern Munich, Inter Milan & Barcelona please raise their right hand?”

As the London Evening Standard nots, that drew a brief response from the account of Ramsey’s representatives Avid Sports & Entertainment Group. Their tweet was “a simple emoji of a waving hand”.

Cagey on Cahill

One player linked to Arsenal in recent weeks is Chelsea defender Gary Cahill, with reports suggesting that the Blues are ready to release the veteran former England centre-back.

The Daily Express claims that the 33-year-old “wants to leave Chelsea this month after falling out of favour with manager Maurizio Sarri”.

Gunners’ gaffer Unai Emery insisted he had not spoken to the board about Cahill when questioned following Monday’s win against Fulham.

However, when asked about January signings, Emery said: “The club is looking.”

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