1pm Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Rekik CONFIRMED, Ozil interest, Sabitzer UPDATE, Lacazette contract talks

1pm Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Rekik CONFIRMED, Ozil interest, Sabitzer UPDATE, Lacazette contract talks

January 8, 2021

ARSENAL return to action this weekend against Newcastle in the FA Cup.

Mesut Ozil's future is the big talking point at the Emirates, while we've the very latest on Marcel Sabitzer and Alexandre Lacazette.

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Follow all the latest from the Emirates below…

  • Josh Graham

    MATT'S YOUR LOT

    Arsenal have confirmed the departure of keeper Matt Macey.

    Macey has joined Scottish side Hibernian after over seven years in North London.

    The 26-year-old joined from Bristol Rovers in 2013 and made two first-team appearances.

    He has regularly featured in matchday squads over the past two seasons – even picking up a winners' medal from the FA Cup final last season following Bernd Leno's injury.

  • Josh Graham

    WIZARD OF OZ

    Mesut Ozil's future will 'become clear' in the next few days, according to Fenerbahce boss Erol Bulut.

    The Arsenal outcast has reportedly signed a three-and-half year deal to join the Turkish giants.

    Bulut was asked about the transfer following his side's 2-1 win over Alanyaspor on Thursday.

    The Fenerbahce coach confirmed Ozil's next move will be decided in a matter of days.

    He told Bein Sports: "Mesut Ozil's situation will become clear in the coming days.

    "Mesut's name is very common. It is not possible for me to make a comment before he comes."

  • Josh Graham

    SEIZE THE DIA

    Arsenal target Boulaye Dia is in talks with London rivals West Ham.

    The Senegalese striker who plays for Stade Riems is the latest name on Irons boss David Moyes’ shopping list to beef up his frontline.

    Moyes has offloaded Haller to Dutch side Ajax for around £25million after finally losing patience.

    Dia, 24, has scored ten goals in France’s Ligue 1 already this season and is available for around £14m plus add ons.

    He was previously linked with the Gunners by French outlet Le 10 Sport.

  • Josh Graham

    SHOW GOES ON

    Mesut Ozil's wife Amine Gulse has reportedly been offered a TV role in order to lure her Arsenal outcast husband to Fenerbahce.

    Ozil appears to finally be sorting out his future after sitting on the sidelines under Mikel Arteta.

    And Football London reports the couple's friend and Turkish TV personality Acun Ilicali is offering to part fund Ozil's salary and assure Gulse of a programme on a 'new digital platform'.

    Ozil has been heavily linked with a move to the city of Istanbul amid reports he will wear the No67.

    Mesut Ozil and wife Amine GulseCredit: Refer to Caption
  • Josh Graham

    YOU'RE NIC'D

    Arsenal chose club-record signing Nicolas Pepe over Crystal Palace's Wilfried Zaha.

    Eagles forward and boyhood Gooner Zaha claimed the Gunners picked his Ivory Coast team-mate over him following talks with Unai Emery.

    Arsenal turned down the chance to sign Wilfried ZahaCredit: Getty Images – Getty

    Zaba told Jamie Carragher's The Greatest Game Podcast: "I had a conversation with the manager.

    “Emery was just like, ‘we don’t really need to go through much’. He said he’d seen me play, he knows I can change games at any time and stuff like that.

    "He was like, ‘yeah we’d love to have you’ and I was just like, ‘yeah I’d love to come’.

    "The conversation was rather straightforward because I played against him when he was manager of Arsenal. He saw what I could do, saw my work-rate, and what I could add to the team.

    “Obviously, it was up to the club who they chose – and they chose Pepe over me.”

  • Josh Graham

    WATCH OUT FOR EM

    Arsenal youngster Emile Smith Rowe has earned a new nickname from his Gunners team-mates after some inspired performances.

    Smith Rowe has even received praise from exiled Mesut Ozil as he showcases his ability in midfield.

    And Arsenal pals have started calling him 'Kev' in reference to Kevin De Bruyne – one of Smith Rowe's idols.

    Also known as the 'Croydon De Bruyne', Kieran Tierney was overheard using his new nickname in a training video.

    And Bukayo Saka wrote 'Kev' on Instagram and cheeky Reiss Nelson tagged De Bruyne in one of Smith Rowe's posts.

  • Josh Graham

    GIFT OF THE GAB

    Rio Ferdinand believes Gabriel Martinelli is the best Arsenal youngster coming through under Mikel Arteta.

    The Manchester United legend and pundit backed the Brazilian forward.

    Speaking on his YouTube channel FIVE, Ferdinand said: "I think Saka, Emile Smith Rowe, they’ve been outstanding.

    "Willock at times has come in and done stuff, same for Maitland-Niles.

    “Without these young players coming in and holding the fort, with all that’s going on, I don’t know where Arsenal would be and the fans would be in the doldrums. Martinelli, for me, is the best one.”

  • Richard Forrester

    GOOD MORNING GUNNERS FANS,

    Arsenal have confirmed the signing of teenage talent Omar Rekik from Hertha Berlin.

    The Gunners have made the 19-year-old defender their first signing of the January transfer window for a fee reportedly worth around £500,000.

    Emirates Stadium bigwigs attempted to recruit Rekik last summer but could not get a deal over the line before the October deadline.

    Meanwhile, Wilfried Zaha has accepted that Arsenal chose Nicolas Pepe ‘over him’ following a failed move to the club.

    He told Jamie Carragher’s The Greatest Game Podcast: “I had a conversation with the manager actually.

    “[Unai] Emery was just like, ‘We don’t really need to go through much’. “He said he’d seen me play, he knows I can change games at any time and stuff like that.

    “He was like, ‘Yeah we’d love to have you’ and I was just like, ‘Yeah I’d love to come’.

    “The conversation was rather straightforward because I played against him when he was manager of Arsenal.

    “He saw what I could do, saw my work-rate, and what I could add to the team.”

    He added: “Obviously, it was up to the club who they chose.

    “And they chose Pepe over me.”

    And finally, Folarin Balogun is reportedly close to signing for a team abroad despite Mikel Arteta’s plea for the Arsenal striker to sign a new contract.

    With his deal up at the end of the season, the 19-year-old is free to negotiate a pre-contract agreement with clubs outside of England.

    According to The Athletic, Balogun is on the verge of agreeing a move away from the Gunners in the summer.

    Playing time is thought to be the youngster’s reason for leaving North London, and the club he first joined at the age of eight.

  • Joe Brophy

    TURKISH DELIGHT

    Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta says Mesut Ozil’s future could be decided in a matter of days amid reports he is set to sign for Fenerbahce.

    Commenting on his future, he said: “I don’t know what is going to happen. Obviously now he’s free to negotiate with other clubs.

    “We will discuss internally what the best situation for him is for the near future, obviously with the player and the agent too, and try to find the best solution for everyone.”

    Pressed on whether Ozil could stay beyond January, he added: “I’m saying we will decide what’s happening in the next few days.”

  • Joe Brophy

    GUNNER SIGN ANYONE?

    Arsenal have been linked to Lyon's Houssem Aouar and Marcel Sabitzer – will Mikel Arteta either of those two names onto this list?

  • Joe Brophy

    GUNNERS STARBOY

    A reminder of Alexandre Lacazette's winner against Brighton following a stunning assist from one of Arsenal's own…

  • Joe Brophy

    WIL POWER

    Former Arsenal target Wilfried Zaha later admitted his feeling that players from abroad are often favoured for big money transfers.

    He told Jamie Carragher’s The Greatest Game Podcast:: "You’re seeing a player come from Brazil or another league – they’re always going to attract more attention.

    "But, I just think if there’s a player that plays in the Premier League, you see him week in, week out. You know what he does.

    "I feel like it’s a no-brainer. The other leagues are totally different."

  • Joe Brophy

    NIC OF TIME

    Wilfried Zaha has accepted that Arsenal chose Nicolas Pepe 'over him' following a failed move to the club.

    He told Jamie Carragher's The Greatest Game Podcast: "I had a conversation with the manager actually.

    "[Unai] Emery was just like, 'We don’t really need to go through much'. "He said he’d seen me play, he knows I can change games at any time and stuff like that.

    "He was like, 'Yeah we’d love to have you' and I was just like, 'Yeah I’d love to come'.

    "The conversation was rather straightforward because I played against him when he was manager of Arsenal.

    "He saw what I could do, saw my work-rate, and what I could add to the team."

    He added: "Obviously, it was up to the club who they chose.

    "And they chose Pepe over me."

  • Joe Brophy

    GAME ON

    Sean Dyche says footballers should be fast-tracked for coronavirus vaccination, to prevent the game being forced into another shutdown.

    He explained: “I think vaccination throughout the game is the way forward for football.

    “I appreciate some people will be surprised by that comment, but if you think about it, we’re all going to get vaccinated.

    "And we all wanted football back, for the cash it generates through tax, and the well-being it generates has been seen.

    “The obvious most high-profile example is Marcus Rashford and what he achieved. There’s a lot of good come through football,

    “I am not trying to step in front of key workers, the vulnerable or anyone who needs it. But if there is a window to fast track football, then you would keep it on the TV in a really tough period.

    “I appreciate there will be people who disagree with me wholeheartedly. But I just feel the balance between getting vaccinations to footballers quicker, the payback would be enormous by comparison.”

  • Joe Brophy

    POT LUCK

    This season's FA Cup winners will bank just half what Arsenal received last year – at £3.4million.

    The Gunners scooped a total £6.8m for beating Chelsea at Wembley in May.

  • Joe Brophy

    PEP TALK

    Lionel Messi is now the world's 97th most valuable footballer.

    Incredibly, Cristiano Ronaldo finds himself 131th with two of the greatest players of all time both trailing Arsenal star Nicolas Pepe.

    That is according to the latest CIES Football Observatory, whose algorithm uses such factors as performance, age and contract length, as well as club and country represented to determine an individual's worth.

  • Joe Brophy

    COR BLIMEY

    Arsenal have confirmed their WSL game with Aston Villa has been called off after a player tested positive for Covid after visiting Dubai.

    The club says the match postponement, which has provoked fury within the women’s game, is due to safety reasons.

    The Gunners squad member who tested positive has not been named.

    In a statement an Arsenal spokeswoman said: “Although initially all of our first team players tested negative on return from the Christmas break, one player has subsequently tested positive for Covid-19 this week.

    “As a result, several first team players are now observing a period of self-isolation as a precaution in accordance with FA and UK Government protocol.

    “Our FA WSL fixture against Aston Villa Women that was due to be played this weekend has been postponed due to health and safety concerns.”

  • Joe Brophy

    TEENAGE KICKS

    Arsenal have confirmed the signing of teenage talent Omar Rekik from Hertha Berlin.

    The Gunners have made the 19-year-old defender their first signing of the January transfer window for a fee reportedly worth around £500,000.

  • Joe Brophy

    CASH INJECTION

    Arsenal have taken out a £120million loan from the Bank of England due to the financial impact of the coronavirus crisis.

    A club statement read: "As we continue to work through the implications of the global pandemic on our finances, we can confirm today that the club has met the criteria set by the Bank of England for the Covid Corporate Financing Facility (CCFF).

    "As a result, we are taking a short-term £120 million loan through this facility to partially assist in managing the impact of the revenue losses attributable to the pandemic.

    "This is a similar approach to that taken by a wide variety of major organisations across many industries including sport, and is repayable in May 2021.

    "The CCFF is designed to provide short-term finance at commercial rates during the pandemic to companies that have strong investment ratings and which make significant contributions to the British economy.

    "The CCFF is in addition to the loan provided by our owners Kroenke, Sports & Entertainment that enabled us to refinance the debt on Emirates Stadium in August last year."

  • Joe Brophy

    ON THE REK-ORD

    Arsenal are set to confirm the signing of teenage talent Omar Rekik from Hertha Berlin.

    The Gunners will make the 19-year-old defender their first signing of the January transfer window for a fee reportedly worth around £500,000.

    Emirates Stadium bigwigs attempted to recruit Rekik last summer but could not get a deal over the line before the October deadline.

    Rekik is expected to initially link up with Arsenal's Under-23s and was spotted training with that group on Wednesday.

     

  • Josh Graham

    COVID CHAOS

    Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta had his say on the Covid chaos engulfing football.

    Mikel Arteta has spoken about the ongoing pandemic and the impact on footballCredit: Getty Images – Getty

    He told reporters: "It is worrying because we see every day what is happening in the country and the level of infections. That is increasing. You can sense not the panic but the worry around everybody.

    "We are suffering for all the people that are involved in different and difficult circumstances. We cannot isolate from that.

    "What we try to do is try to maintain the infections as low as possible, follow all the protocols and the doctors are doing an incredible job to try to maintain a safe environment for us.

    "We have to try to keep insisting, not just to our players but also to all the staff and everybody involved around the place, to be very conscious of how difficult the situation that we are in is and how lucky we are to still do what we do.

    "Yeah they [the players] are worried but they know that in this environment they are really well protected. Obviously this virus is touching everybody now personally.

    "You always have a relative, a parent, a friend that has been hit with the virus in many different ways. We are now very educated about it and have a history related to it. Then it becomes more worrying of course."

  • Josh Graham

    O-MAR TO COME

    Mikel Arteta has revealed Arsenal are set to confirm the signing of teenage talent Omar Rekik from Hertha Berlin.

    The Gunners will make the 19-year-old defender their first signing of the January transfer window for a fee reportedly worth around £500,000.

    Arteta said: "We will announce it when we possibly can, he is a young talent that we have been following for a while that has a really bright future, but we will give more details when we can."

    When asked whether he expects an announcement soon, Arteta added: "Yes. I don’t know [whether it could be today]! Very soon."

  • Josh Graham

    YOUNG GUNS

    With Mesut Ozil finally set to leave North London, Mikel Arteta has spoken about the young Gunners that can take the side forward.

    He said: "We need every player that is involved in our squad. The fact that the youngsters are involved in the squad means that they have the level to compete with any player in that squad.

    "The young players have moments through the season. It's really difficult for them to be constantly at the level for ten months, but sometimes players develop, players have moments and you have to take those moments.

    "If that means that they're pushing somebody else, I think it's really healthy competition for the team.

    "The team always gets better when something like that happens so I think it's really positive news."

  • Josh Graham

    FOL'S GOLD

    Folarin Balogun is reportedly close to signing for a team abroad despite Mikel Arteta's plea for the Arsenal striker to sign a new contract.

    With his deal up at the end of the season, the 19-year-old is free to negotiate a pre-contract agreement with clubs outside of England.

    According to The Athletic, Balogun is on the verge of agreeing a move away from the Gunners in the summer.

    Playing time is thought to be the youngster's reason for leaving North London, and the club he first joined at the age of eight.

    Arteta is yet to hand Balogun his full debut in the senior team, with just five outings off the bench in cup competitions this season.

    Arteta told reporters: "You need three parties to make a deal. For sure, the club wants to make a deal, the manager wants to make a deal, the player wants to stay and I'm not sure about the agent.

    ""I'm not saying he's stopping [the deal]. I'm saying that we need to find an agreement with him. I'm telling you that we are doing everything we can to keep him here and hopefully from the other part they are doing the same."

  • Josh Graham

    ART ATTACK

    Mikel Arteta has slammed the constant rule changing in cup competitions but thinks all tournaments have become more important.

    The Arsenal boss was asked about the FA Cup fourth and fifth round draws taking place at the same time and said: "It seems like every year we're changing some rules in every competition, every cup. Something needs to be different, I don't know why it is.

    "I think we are doing something good in the country in that every cup is becoming more and more important.

    "For example you saw in the Carabao Cup that the teams involved in the semi-finals and final compared to the last 18 years has improved. 

    "Everybody wants to win a trophy, everybody knows how difficult it is to win a trophy, so you have to stick to every competition.

    That is raising the levels, certainly, but we can do things a little bit simpler sometimes."

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