The increasing worries that the highest profile stars at the Emirates will leave as free agents towards the end of the season, in spite of featuring consistently this season, ex-Arsenal player Lee Dixon has said the duo should be “shown the door” for not committing to the club.
Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil have both been over and again be linked with moves away from the Emirates, to Manchester City and Manchester United, separately.
Having already refused to commit their future to the Gunners, the duo could leave at the end of the season once their contract expires.
Lee Dixon believes the disposition towards a player’s dedication ought to stay unaltered, insisting that the Arsenal team he played in would have “shown the door” to Ozil and Sanchez.
“We’d have just shown them the door. If you don’t want to play, then go. That’s not changed,” Dixon stated
“If a player doesn’t want to play for you: it happened with Michael Thomas 18 months after he scored (the title-winning goal against Liverpool) in ’89, he was in dispute with the club or George about money. He ended up going in similar circumstances and signing with Liverpool.”
“It’s no different. If a player doesn’t want to stay somewhere, yes, agents and players manipulate situations, and clubs do, in order to get the best deal for the parties concerned, but in general, if you don’t want to go there, and you don’t want to stay, then you will be ousted from the environment and dressing room pretty quickly.”
“Players work out whether you want to be there or not, and certainly fans do when they see your performances on the pitch,”
Alan Smith and David O’Leary were among Dixon’s teammates in the Arsenal team of 1989 that faithfull Gunners supporters recollect so affectionately.
While Smith believes Sanchez and Ozil are “completely entitled” to wind their contracts down, both he and O’Leary scrutinized the club’s judgment for again being in that position in the wake of selling Robin van Persie in comparative conditions in 2012.
If somebody doesn’t want to be there and wants to wind their contract down, that’s within their right,” Smith, 54, told Press Association Sport.
“It’s up to the manager then and how he handles that.
“Arsenal has a track record of allowing players to run down contracts, and these two are going to be the biggest examples. They could have got £60 million for Alexis Sanchez; Arsene and the club turned it down.
“Ozil’s a slightly different kettle of fish but it might well be that they do lose those two players. I’d be more concerned about Sanchez going than Ozil.”