On Monday, Arsenal announced ‘a voluntary agreement’ with their players, Mikel Arteta and his core coaching staff to cut salaries by 12.5% for a 12 month period. However, Ozil is one of three players yet to be convinced.
Ozil is the club’s highest earner on £350,000-a-week, with the cut taking his salary to £306,250-a-week. Ozil’s agent commented earlier this month, saying, “Deferral is an option but not to agree a cut today when the clubs may still make the same profit as last year…”
Many players in the Premier League are on less lucrative deals and are set to take pay cuts. Matty Longstaff of Newcastle United has pledged to donate 30% of his wages to the NHS. This is despite earning less than 0.3% of Ozil’s wages.
Many question whether Ozil is worth his wages at 87.5%, let alone at the full £350,000. The midfielder only has three goal contributions this season, in another campaign that will certainly fall short of expectation.
The 31-year-old has often been criticised for a lack of effort and consistency. Much of the frustration surrounding Ozil is that at his best he is world-class. Unfortunately for the Gunners, showcases of his ability have been few and far in between.
The Professional Footballers Association has advised players against taking wage cuts. Initially, Sportsmail revealed last Monday that Arsenal’s players refused to accept such pay cuts. The club’s PFA rep, Hector Bellerin, brought the proposal to the squad on behalf of Arsenal. Arteta allegedly intervened last Wednesday after they rejected the proposal, sparking a change of heart in most.
Arsenals players are in a position to earn this money back. They will receive half of the money back if they manage to secure Europa League qualification.
Arsenal have committed to repaying all 12.5% back should they qualify for the Champions League in the next two seasons.
However, the players will have to swallow the full 12.5% reduction if they do not qualify for Europe.
Arsenal, sat in ninth, are currently five points away from the European places.
Many Arsenal fans have called for the sale of Ozil in recent years. The biggest stumbling block in trying to sell Ozil is that clubs aren’t willing to take on the Germans astronomical wages.
His current contract expires next summer, but he will have to accept a pay cut at some point to sign another deal with any team.