Arsenal manager Unai Emery has one again stated that Mesut Ozil is part of his plans, despite remaining as an unused substitute in the Gunners’ 2-1 win against Chelsea on Saturday.
The 30-year has played just 155 minutes of Premier League football since Arsenal’s 1-1 draw with Wolves on November 11 and has been linked with a host of clubs.
Yet despite this, Emery insisted Ozil could feature in the club’s next game.
“He was on Saturday okay to play, but we decided not play [him],” Emery said.
“I spoke with him also and I want to him be ready for the match today, for the next matches like all the players in the team.
“Against Chelsea, I have the confidence in him if he played, I think he could do like we want and the next matches we are going to need every player and also his quality,” he added.
While speculation continues about Ozil’s future, his agent told Goal earlier in the month that the former Real Madrid man has no desire to depart the Emirates.
“Mesut signed a new contract last January because he saw his future at Arsenal and nothing has changed in his mind,” said Ozil’s agent, Dr. Erkut Sogut.
“He wants to stay for the duration of that contract and maybe even longer. Mesut is 100 per cent committed to Arsenal Football Club. He loves the club, shares its values and does not want to be anywhere else.”
Should Ozil force his way back into Emery’s plans it would have to be at the expense of Matteo Guendouzi or Aaron Ramsey, both of whom put in excellent performances against Chelsea.
However, the former World Cup winner may well get his chance in the Gunners next game, an FA Cup fourth-round tie with Manchester United.
Emery rested a number of key first-team players during the previous round against Blackpool and may well do the same this time around.