Press conference

Wenger on Ozil and Alexis’ derby displays

In the biggest games, you need your biggest players to perform - and that’s exactly what Mesut Ozil and Alexis did on Saturday.

The German was almost unplayable at times in the north London derby, while his Chilean team-mate scored the second goal of our 2-0 win.

Arsene Wenger was asked about the pair after the match and this is what he said:

on Alexis and Ozil performing this well with a year to go on their contracts…
If you have to give me one credit, it’s that I’ve never questioned that. I know them well and I know that when these guys go on the pitch, they want to win the game. They’ve shown their commitment again today. I’ve never questioned their commitment. They can have bad games but the problem is that, when a player gets near the end of his contract and has a bad game, everybody says it’s because he’s going. Their interest is to play.

on whether days like today will help Alexis and Ozil sign new contracts…
I just said that I’ve been in this job long enough to know that’s not enough. The quality of the contract has to be good and enough for them as well. I am convinced that they love the club and they love the team. All the rest will be decided [soon]. When? I don’t really know. I’m not alone in mastering that.

on whether the quality of their contracts is the sticking point…
It’s part of it. The whole thing has to be right and they have to be happy. I believe that they love the club, they want to stay, but there are other top clubs out there who offer good contracts as well.