Arsenal want to bring the next Mesut Ozil to the Emirates Stadum – and will have to beat Barcelona in order to secure his signature.
Gunners boss Mikel Arteta, of course, played and managed the original Mesut Ozil in north London. The Basque boss used the German playmaker early in his tenure as manager, though in January of 2021, Ozil quit Arsenal for Fenerbahce, rescinding his contract in the process.
Ozil has since retired from football – but one star identified as the next in line for his mantle has emerged as a major target for both Arsenal and Barcelona.
Spanish outlet Relevo (opens in new tab) says that Barça have entered the race to sign Fener’s attacking midfield prospect Arda Guler – though Arsenal have historic interest, with multiple bids lodged in the past.
Turkish outlet Takvim (opens in new tab) last linked the Premier League leaders with a move for Guler, who is believed to be valued by the Istanbul giants at just over £20 million. The teenager played alongside Ozil briefly, telling him, “A super goal and a super assist. Quality,” after the wonderkid’s star turn in a 5-2 win over Alanyaspor.
One former coach has even confirmed the interest from Arsenal for the star, claiming that it could take as much as £25m to sign him.
“I don’t think Arda will stay in Turkey too long,” Erol Tokgozler, Guler’s former coach at Genclerbirligi, told CNN Turk in March last year. “I know that there are offers from Arsenal and Bayern Munich. With each passing match, the number of these (interested) teams will increase. [Bids of] €20 to 30m for Arda will be very ordinary.”
While Barcelona links are new, it seems unlikely Arsenal could rekindle their interest in Guler. With the Gunners already having a selection headache involving their current forwards – and welcoming back Folarin Balogun this summer – spending upwards of £20m on an 18-year-old to compete for forward places may not be a priority this summer.
Guler is valued at around €11m by Transfermarkt (opens in new tab).
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