Mesut Ozil not scheduled to travel to Turkey for Champions League - Wenger

Arsenal record signing Mesut Ozil not expected to travel for Champions League fixture, hints Arsene Wenger.

Arsenal's £42 million record signing Mesut Ozil is not expected to travel for the club's crucial Champions League qualifier.

Arsene Wenger gave an update to the club's official website on injuries and fitness ahead of the tie, and said Per Mertesacker was the only of the club's World Cup winners in contention to face Besiktas on Tuesday, to cover a possible injury to Laurent Koscielny.

He said: "We will assess Koscielny on Monday; if he's fit and capable to play, we play him.

"It was our plan to bring the Germans back in contention for Everton. But in case of emergency I will take Mertesacker."

Wenger does not state that Ozil or Podolski are in contention, and barring a change of plan, it appears he will stick with his intention to use him in the tricky Premier League fixture against Everton next weekend.

The Frenchman adds that Arsenal are 'desperate' to win the fixture, so leaving out the German playmaker will not be a decision he takes lightly, more a decision based on his knowledge of Ozil's fitness.

It will be disappointing for Ozil to miss out on the Besiktas trip, if this is indeed the case, due to his own Turkish roots.

Ozil, Podolski, and Mertesacker returned late to pre-season due to World Cup involvement, and are yet to play, even though Toni Kroos started last Tuesday's UEFA Super Cup for Real Madrid.

Arsenal will also be without the injured Theo Walcott, not due back until the end of the month.

The Gunners have a sizeable squad and enough attacking options still to feel they can get a good result in Turkey, but playing just three days after the Crystal Palace match, having Ozil and Podolski ready as they rotated the squad would have been ideal.

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