Arsenal attacker Mesut Ozil could make a surprise return to La Liga this summer with Barcelona seemingly keen on his services.
The Germany international has been added to the Catalan club’s shortlist as they look to find a suitable replacement for Paris Saint-Germain-bound Neymar. Neymar is expected to travel to Qatar later this week where he will undergo a medical before sealing his world-record £196m move to Parc des Princes.
The Brazilian has been a pivotal player for Barcelona alongside the likes of Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez, and his departure is likely to leave a huge void to fill ahead of the Spanish Super Cup. Real Madrid will have the presence of Cristiano Ronaldo when they take on Barcelona in the first-leg of the competition on August 13, and the absence of Neymar could significantly reduce the forward strength.
According to Don Balon, Barcelona have identified Ozil as a probable replacement for Neymar, should they fail to clinch a deal for top target Philippe Coutinho. The Copa del Rey winners are willing to pay a club-record sum for the Reds attacker, but unfortunately, Jurgen Klopp is adamant that the Brazilian won’t be sold at any cost.
Meanwhile, Ozil has performed fairly well during his four-year stint with the Gunners, and Barcelona are aiming to lure him back to Spain in order to take a dig at Real Madrid. The Los Blancos faithful booed former boss Carlo Ancelotti for selling the German back in 2013, and Barcelona are looking to make them regret further by offering him a fresh chance in La Liga.
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has repeatedly iterated that the German would be staying put for the final year of his contract, but Barcelona could try their luck with a £53m offer for his signature. Ozil had a good outing with the Gunners last term as he bagged 12 goals and 13 assists across all competitions.