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Arsenal want to sell Ozil this summer

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Arsenal are looking to sell top earner Mesut Ozil this summer to free the club of his exorbitant wages, sources told ESPN’s James Olley.

However, the 31-year-old is reportedly hoping to see out the remainder of his contract, which expires in June 2021.

Mikel Arteta left Ozil out of the squad for Wednesday’s match against Manchester City due to tactical reasons, but his conspicuous absence fueled rumors of an exit. Ozil had made 10 straight Premier League starts under Arteta before the season was suspended in March.

Arteta’s relationship with Ozil remains professional, according to Olley, but the player’s salary is now seen as prohibitive amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The World Cup winner is reportedly collecting £350,000 a week on a contract that senior figures have deemed a burden.

Ozil reportedly refused to accept a 12.5% pay cut like the rest of his teammates in April – even after Arteta pleaded with the midfielder to play his part and support the club in troubling times. Arsenal’s executive team had already agreed to slash more than a third of their salary.