Arsenal will sign Schalke star Julian Draxler in January for £37million as the club plan for life without £42.5million flop Mesut Ozil, according to reports.
Arsene Wenger has stepped up his pursuit of the Schalke midfielder after Ozil was ruled out of action for up to 12 weeks with a knee injury. The club had been linked with the 21-year-old last January and throughout the summer, but it now seems that Wenger is prepared to pay the Bundesliga outfit’s asking price.
Where does this leave Ozil? The 25-year-old has recently been linked with a move to Bayern Munich, whose manager Pep Guardiola is a fan. He could end up staying until the end of the season, but is then likely to depart in search of a new challenge.
The question is, though, who is the better player: Mesut Ozil or Julian Draxler? Using the statistics from the current domestic season, we assess the situation.
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Having played fewer minutes this term, Draxler has been responsible for scoring more regularly.
The youngster has also recorded a greater number of successful take ons per appearance, while proving his superiority in the air, with two headed duels won each match, compared to the Arsenal man's zero.
Nonetheless, Ozil has outperformed his junior in several departments - all of which are considered more integral for a player occupying the 'number 10' role. Having completed 88% of his passes - compared to Draxler's 76% success rate - he is far more efficient at maintaining possession.
The former Real Madrid star has also created 13 more scoring chances for his teammates than Draxler since the beginning of the season, while playing almost twice as many paces in each appearance; two thirds of which have seen the ball move forward.
Ozil has also proven more efficient in a defensive capacity, winning just under one tackle per match - compared to Draxler's one for the season.
If rumours are true, Arsene Wenger should take heed. Overall, the Ozil emerges at the superior asset, and when played centrally, he is a crucial asset to the Gunners.
Being a left-sided winger, Draxler would inject real quality into the club's starting line-up. However, if the Frenchman can find a system that accommodates Ozil in his natural position - the traditional 'number 10' - he will soon reap the rewards.