TRANSFER TRACKER: Report
The chatter surrounding Mesut Ozil’s potential move to D.C. United has picked back up, with Steven Goff of The Washington Post reporting that club representatives were in London on Tuesday to meet with those from the Arsenal midfielder’s camp. Arsenal drew Chelsea, 2-2, in a Premier League match at Stamford Bridge that saw the German withdrawn after 55 minutes for Matteo Guendouzi.
Should Ozil come to MLS and America’s capital city, Goff indicated that the winter of 2021 is a likely arrival date. Ozil, 31, is under contract for another year-and-a-half with Premier League side Arsenal, where he’s played since arriving from Spanish powerhouse Real Madrid in 2013.
D.C. United had a representative in London on Tuesday for a meeting with players and agents that included @MesutOzil1088, a dream target first reported here last August. It seems Jan. 2021 is the earliest DCU would have a chance at him. #dcu #mls #gunners— Steven Goff (@SoccerInsider) January 22, 2020
Much can change over the next year, though Ozil would certainly bring star power to Audi Field after Wayne Rooney departed this offseason to become a Derby County player-coach. Rooney originally arrived in the summer of 2018 as D.C. opened their new stadium, helping to propel two straight Audi MLS Cup Playoff berths after missing out in 2017.
Ozil has earned 92 caps for Germany on the international stage, highlighted by playing in the last three World Cups and last two UEFA European Championships. Throughout his career, the creative midfielder has been a lynchpin in club soccer at Arsenal, Real Madrid and Bundesliga sides Werden Bremen and FC Schalke 04. He’s racked up over 80 goals and 200 assists at those various stops.
D.C. have also been linked to another major European star this offseason in Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric, a crucial piece of Croatia’s run to the 2018 FIFA World Cup final. They’re yet to go that route, though, and have instead brought in younger, impactful players on the domestic and international market. Peruvian midfielder Edison Flores was acquired as a Designated Player from Morelia, Julian Gressel arrived Tuesday from Atlanta United via trade and Homegrown attacker Kevin Paredes were all signed in a weeklong span.
Looking ahead to the 2020 season, D.C. open their slate Feb. 29 at home against the Colorado Rapids.