Arsenal should sell Mesut Ozil and replace him with Ajax’s Hakim Ziyech, according to former Gunners winger Marc Overmars.
Ajax’s director of football played for both Arsenal and the Amsterdammers, and has maintained a heavy interest in the two sides.
Should Arsenal dump Ozil for Ziyech? Five things to know…
- Hakim Ziyech amassed 21 goals and 20 assists in all competitions last season, compared to Ozil’s six goals and three assists.
- Only Christian Eriksen has created more chances than Mesut Ozil since his Premier League debut.
- Ziyech was involved in five goals in the Champions League knockout stages last season – only Lionel Messi was involved in more (eight).
- Cristiano Ronaldo publicly said he was ‘angry’ that Ozil left Real Madrid, saying he was ‘the player who knew best his moves in front of goal’.
- Ziyech is reportedly available for just £25 million due to a release clause in his contract.
Despite perhaps being against his employer’s best interests, he has advised Arsenal to replace Ozil with the Moroccan.
Speaking to Dutch outlet Algemeen Dagblad, Overmars said: “I am a little surprised that things are still so quiet around Hakim. I think he has played better every year and his statistics are exceptionally good. Many clubs are increasingly looking at that.
“They look more at the numbers than at what he shows and what is happening around him. I think Hakim is better than Mesut Özil. I would say: sell him and you will get Hakim for half but they didn’t listen to me. So it could just be that he stays with Ajax.”
Subscribe to Squawka’s Youtube channel here.
Two uncertain futures
Mesut Ozil and Hakim Ziyech both find themselves with uncertain futures, for totally different reasons.
Since having a phenomenal 2015/16 season, Ozil has struggled to remain a consistent performer at Arsenal and found himself very much a peripheral figure last season under new manager Unai Emery. Nobody can doubt Ozil’s talent, however, and many suggest Emery’s treatment of Ozil is actually extremely unfair.
Ziyech, on the other hand, has been outstanding this season. He was instrumental in Ajax’s run to the Champions League semi-finals, and his reported release clause of £25 million means that it’s hard to believe that there won’t be intense interest from clubs this summer. On top of this, Overmars promised to let Ziyech leave should the right offer come in.