Is the talented Werder Bremen youngster set for a move to Old Trafford?
Sir Alex Ferguson kept open the possibility of Manchester United signing the 21-year-old German World Cup star Mesut Ozil last night, after his side signalled their intent to win back the Premier League title from Chelsea with a convincing win in the Community Shield.
Ferguson offered an ambiguous explanation of why he was at Craven Cottage on Saturday to see Fulham’s match with Werder Bremen, who are keen to sell their €16m (£13.2m) prodigy Ozil now, rather than lose his value when he falls out of contract in a year’s time. Ferguson initially sought a diversion tactic when the issue of his presence at Fulham came up, joking, “Yes, I was there; there were photographs.” But after saying that “a lot of clubs are interested in Ozil”, he was asked whether United were one and then looked flustered. “I didn’t say that. I don’t know,” he said – and left the room.
Although Ozil would rather stay in Bremen for another year, the German club are anxious to get their return on a player who, in contract, would be worth closer to £30m. The Premier League certainly looks the most likely destination because discussions between his representatives and both Real Madrid and Barcelona have failed to secure assurances that Ozil would get the regular first-team football he wants. The picture is complicated because the Germans were also handed a difficult Champions League qualifying round draw on Friday, which sees them play Sampdoria later this month. If they leave Ozil out and preserve his value, they risk a failure to qualify which would wipe out any income from selling him. (Independent)
Does the flustered response from Sir Alex indicate his desire to sign the talented German international. It does seem that Manchester United are leading the chase for the Werder Bremen playmaker as the likes of Real Madrid seem to have decided to pass over a move for the 21 year old.
Even though Manchester United eased past Chelsea in yesterday’s curtain raiser Ferguson may still be keen on making some last minute additions to his side before the transfer window slams shut. Clearly the Old Trafford boss is a fan of the youngster and having brought in just two reasonably priced signings this summer, in Chris Smalling and Javier Hernandez, Sir Alex has the funds to complete the deal.
Those who believe that the club does not have the finances to secure any more signings would do well to take heed of Chief Executive David Gill who has stated very publicly that funds are available to the United boss if indeed he wants to use them.
Man United do not have a massive squad and indeed there is a large chunk of the side made up of young talents coming through the ranks, which bodes well for the future. The addition of Mesut Ozil would help give the side even more creativity in their midfield and would provide them with a goal scoring midfielder, something they have lacked for some time.
Paul Scholes was immense in the Community Shield match yesterday but gone are his days of chipping in with a dozen plus goals. The likes of Darren Fletcher and Michael Carrick will help here and there but when you see what Frank Lampard and Cesc Fabregas offer in terms of assists and the end product of a good measure of goals, then Ferguson doesn’t have a similar weapon in his armoury, presumably this is where the German international would come in.
The cost wouldn’t be astronomical and whilst Ferguson could wait until next summer to clinch his signing for nothing, which would be a risky game to play as other sides would clearly be looking to do likewise.