One of Arsene Wenger’s last acts of his 22 year reign at Arsenal, was to convince Mesut Ozil to re-sign on for five years, but now that he watching Unai Emery refusing to play the German, he has explained the reasons why he thought it was sensible to re-sign a top class player on such a long contract, as the price of a similar replacement would be astronomical, but he doesn’t think that Ozil’s five year deal or his wages should make him an automatic selection for the Gunners.
In fact Le Prof thinks that it may have had a detrimental effect on Ozil, as he is now guaranteed a fortune whether he plays or not. “I feel that the length of the contract has nothing to do normally with the selection of the team. But sometimes there are special cases,” Wenger said on Sky Sports. “Most of the time now we think when we sign a player for five years we have a good player for five years. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that they practice, they play their best. Because they might be in their comfort zone.
“He has a contract but the problem is that if you want to buy a player like him you have to spend £100m.
“And to maintain the value of the player, beyond the Ozil case, it is more about the way football is structured.
“To buy players of top, top quality you need £100m. So the decision you have to make is whether you re-sign the player, who costs us nothing, or do we have the money to buy a new player?”
So, in fact, it was a massive risk to give such a sensitive, unpredictable player that has won everything, such a long contract on such high wages, rather than bring in a hungry young player who wants to fight for the glory. It’s very very complicated, and can we even think that this was Wenger’s decision? Or was the new management team that caused this situation?