Arsenal fans can ready themselves for at least 18 more months of Mesut Ozil after vowing not to “run away” and see out his contract.
The German has been marginalised by manager Unai Emery since he arrived at the start of last season.
Ozil’s inability – or unwillingness – to do what the Spaniard wants has seen him resigned to the bench for much of his tenure.
But his whopping £350,000-a-week wages are a huge burden on the Gunners and there have been calls to offload the playmaker if he isn’t part of Emery’s plans.
Finding a suitor has proved challenging given his salary, but it looks a redundant task with Ozil determined to ride out the storm at the Emirates.
He told the Athletic : “When I signed the new deal, I thought about it very carefully and said it was one of the most important decisions of my footballing career.
“I didn’t want to stay for just one or two more years, I wanted to commit my future to Arsenal and the club wanted me to do the same.
“You can go through difficult times, like this, but that is no reason to run away and I’m not going to. I’m here until at least 2021.
“I said that Arsene Wenger was a big factor in me joining Arsenal — and he was — but ultimately I signed for the club.
“Even when Arsene announced he was leaving, I wanted to stay because I love playing for Arsenal and that’s why I’ve been here for six years.”
This season Ozil has started just two games, with one of those coming in the Carabao Cup.
Emery’s commitment to blooding in Arsenal’s youth prospects has also hampered Ozil’s involvement with the likes of Joe Willock seemingly above him in the pecking order.
The Gunners head to Sheffield on Monday night where the Blades lie in wait and Ozil will be hoping to feature.