When does Mesut Ozil’s contract expire & which clubs could the Arsenal outcast join?

Mesut Ozil
The Gunners playmaker was once one of the most sought-after talents in football and still has his admirers

Mesut Ozil finds himself shunted to the periphery at Arsenal and, having been cut from the official squad, it looks certain that he will be moving on to a new club once his contract expires.

As a World Cup winner who is widely lauded as one of the finest playmakers of his generation, Ozil's fall from grace at the Emirates Stadium is a source of confusion for many, particularly as the Gunners struggle for creativity.

However, for others it is an example of poor management - both in terms of handing the player such a lucrative deal in the first place and then proceeding to alienate him so publicly.

So, when will the German's north London nightmare end? Goal takes a look at when Ozil's contract is up and which clubs he could sign for.

When does Mesut Ozil's Arsenal contract expire?

Ozil's current Arsenal contract will expire in the summer of 2021, at which point he will be a free agent.

The World Cup winner's current deal with the Gunners was agreed in February 2018 and he reportedly received a major wage boost in putting pen to paper on that occasion.

Indeed, it is reported that the playmaker earns approximately £350,000 ($470k) a week on the deal, which would make him one of the best earners in the Premier League.

In fact, American business magazine Forbes listed him as one of the highest paid athletes in the world in 2020.

He was one of just 14 footballers to be included on the list and came in at number 49, ahead of basketball player Kyle Lowry and golfer Jordan Spieth, as well as Paul Pogba and Antoine Griezmann.

When is Mesut Ozil allowed to speak to other clubs?

With Ozil's contract set to expire at the end of June 2021, he is permitted to engage in talks with other clubs as a free agent in January 2021.

Negotiations can begin at that point and he will be allowed to leave the Gunners as a Bosman transfer.

Which clubs could Mesut Ozil join?

While, at 32 years of age, Ozil cannot be said to be in his prime, he is still a supremely talented footballer with a vast well of experience beneath him and there will be plenty of suitors eyeing him up.

Turkish club Fenerbahce are reportedly interested in bringing Ozil to Istanbul and he has been consistently linked. Indeed, Ozil, who is proud of his Turkish heritage, was even touted for a switch to the Super Lig club at the beginning of 2020 by Gunners team-mate Mohamed Elneny.

"Mesut really loves Fenerbahce. He's always speaking about the club and the fans," Elneny, who was on loan at Besiktas at the time, told beIN Sports. "If you ask me, I think he could come to Fenerbahce. He's always trying to annoy me by singing Fenerbahce chants."

Ozil has also reportedly attracted attention from the other side of the Atlantic, with a number of Major League Soccer clubs keeping tabs on his availability.

The most likely destination, should Ozil find the prospect of a move to North America alluring, is D.C. United - that is, according to Turkish outlet DHA.

Fenerbahce and D.C. United are a far cry from the stature of clubs that Ozil was linked with when he last approached the end of a contract at Arsenal.

Back then, he was on the radar of teams such as Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain, with a number of clubs in the Chinese Super League also believed to be ready to fork out. Barcelona were also reported to be interested.

While it doesn't seem realistic at this point in his career, it is not entirely beyond the realms of possibility that Ozil could still sign for a football behemoth.

Article continues below

Former Gunners team-mate Jack Wilshere is sure that his friend can still cut it at the highest level, for example, suggesting that he would be worthy of a place at any English club.

"I reckon he could get into any team in the Premier League, that is my opinion, and to not even have the opportunity to compete for a place is difficult to understand." the England international told ITV.

For now, Turkey and North America appear to be the most likely destinations, but the World Cup winner has also reportedly got admirers in Italy, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.