16 goals, 17 assists – Arsenal would find Mesut Ozil’s ultimate replacement in this 26-year-old workhorse

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Arsenal Opinion: Why Arsenal have to make a move for Hakim Ziyech

If there is one player in the world that Arsenal need to start looking to replace, it’s Mesut Ozil. Few have polarized the Premier League like that wonderful German playmaker and now that he’s 30 and not in Unai Emery’s good books, it’s time to let him go.

Sure, the fans and probably a lot of players rejoiced when he stayed instead of following Alexis Sanchez out the door. But now that his wages have caused Aaron Ramsey to leave and the fact that Ozil’s created or scored just 9 goals all season makes a massive impact.

Combine that with his lack of appearances, a disappearance in December and even January of this season and various other issues, it does not make for good reading. All it shows is that while Ozil may be arguably one of the best playmakers in the world football and the best Arsenal have had since Dennis Bergkamp and Thierry Henry, he isn’t a workaholic.

That’s what Emery demands, that his players give their all and then some. Blood, sweat and tears should be pouring out their bodies at the end of the game and while that is a little unrealistic, it’s something that has been demanded.

Of course, few can deny that the German has done exactly that off-late, especially in crunch moments as recently as against Valencia. In the first leg, there was no player on the Arsenal team-sheet who created more chances or completed more tackles than Ozil.

Of course the second leg was a completely different story, but it shows that the German has it in him. But for how long and at the age of 30, how much more can he give?

It’s exactly why Arsenal have to start looking ahead and few players in the world would come close to replacing Ozil as Hakim Ziyech would. With Ajax announcing that Ziyech will be leaving in the summer window, it leaves the door open to a myriad of clubs (Mirror).

From Liverpool all the way to transfer banned Chelsea, all have been linked with a move but it’s Arsenal who hold a key advantage. Apparently, the Moroccan international is a massive fan of both the club and Mesut Ozil, which gives Unai Emery and company a lead that they have to take.

An absolutely wonderful creative genius, Ziyech goes above and beyond for his club. This season has showcased that more than anything, with the 26-year-old literally running himself into the ground for Ajax.

Add that to the fact that he contributed to 45 goals this season, with 16 goals and 17 assists in the Eredivisie alone. It’s a magnificent total and one that few players in the world can even come close to matching.

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Conclusion

Hakim Ziyech is an absolute gem of a player and one that would be perfectly suited to both the Premier League and Unai Emery. Add that to his love for Arsenal and you get a move that has to happen. If it doesn’t then the club have nobody but themselves to blame for that.

Siddhant Lazar @SiddhantAnush

Tom Landry once said "Football is an incredible game. Sometimes it's so incredible, it's unbelievable." Football is and always will be the beautiful game. What every child understands, yet every adult struggles to, is that it is a game that defines the nature of the universe. But that's just me.

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