Mar 14, 2017
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Arsenal round-up: FA Cup semi-final draw; Manchester United monitor midfielder; former player targeted

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The FA Cup semi-final draw was made on Monday and Arsenal learned their fate after beating Lincoln City on Saturday evening. They have been drawn to face Manchester City at Wembley in a few weeks and it is certainly a fixture for the neutrals to get excited for. Pep Guardiola’s men will enter the tie as favourites after some impressive performances of late. However, the Gunners more than held their own in the previous meeting between the two sides and they will feel that the draw could have gone a lot worse.

 

The last four of the FA Cup are all teams that are currently in the top six of the Premier League, underlining the difficulty of winning this competition. Arsenal’s main focus will be qualifying for the Champions League, but they will view the FA Cup as a trophy that is worth winning. If this is to be Arsene Wenger’s last season in charge, he will want to bow out on a high. Therefore, they will want to win the domestic cup competition. Although their route to the final has been relatively easy, they could only beat what is in front of them. Now they must show that they can win in big matches and that is something that they have struggled to do this season.

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A concerning story that is being reported by Football,London is that Mesut Ozil is a shock target for Manchester United. The German has previously worked with Jose Mourinho at Real Madrid and his former manager is interesting in taking him to Old Trafford. The Red Devils are monitoring his contract situation and they could be ready to pounce in the summer if the opportunity arises.

 

Arsenal will be worried about losing Ozil as it is clear that he has yet to be persuaded to sign a new deal. He will need to be convinced that the Gunners are heading in the right direction before signing on the dotted line. Considering the anger that the club faced after selling Robin van Persie to Manchester United, they won’t want to make the same mistake with their midfield star. If he does leave the football club, they need to make sure that he leaves the Premier League as it could come back to bite them if it doesn’t. Also, it isn’t a good image for Arsenal to be selling one of their best players to a rival club. They need to make sure that this move doesn’t happen, regardless of whether or not Manchester United are interested.

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Finally, Arsenal have been scouting Besiktas midfielder Oguzhan Ozyakup in recent weeks with the view of signing him during the summer. The Turkish international was once on the books at the Emirates Stadium as a youth player, but he didn’t manage to make it at the club. He has since gone away and become an accomplished midfielder, scoring 25 goals and contributing 37 assists in 169 appearances for the Turkish club. The 24-year-old is valued at €15 million and has just over one year left on his current contract.

 

There is believed to be interest from Sevilla as well as the Gunners. However, the Premier League club will feel confident of winning any race to sign the Turkish international considering their connections to the player. He is a dynamic midfielder who can beat opposition players and score goals from range. However, the most impressive part of his game is his passing, as he is the main creative player for Besiktas. His main weakness is his defensive contribution, but if he were to sign for Arsenal, he would be considered somebody to compete with Santi Cazorla. This could be a shrewd signing if the club choose to pursue it.

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Featured image: All rights reserved by Stuart MacFarlane

Article Categories:
Arsenal · Transfer Round-up
Jake Jackman

Jake is a student based in the South East. He is a Newcastle fan and has a keen interest in Dutch football. Jake can be found on Twitter here - @jakejackmann.

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