Unai Emery reaffirms Mesut Özil’s importance to Arsenal

Manager Unai Emery says Arsenal “need” Mesut Özil and he will be in the squad for Saturday’s Premier League match against Burnley at the Emirates.

Özil, 30, has been linked with a move after being left out for “tactical” reasons in recent weeks.

The former Germany international, who joined Arsenal from Real Madrid in 2013, failed to make the bench for the midweek League Cup loss to Tottenham.

Asked if he still had a future with the Gunners, Emery said: “yes, why not?”

Ozil has also been troubled by a back injury in recent weeks and has started only one match since 11 November – a Europa League dead rubber at home to Qarabag.

Emery confirmed the club’s highest paid player would be in the squad to face 18th-placed Burnley as the Gunners look to respond from defeats by Southampton – which ended their 22-match unbeaten run – and rivals Spurs, who won the League Cup quarter-final at the Emirates 2-0.

“I want every player with a good mentality to help us and give us their characteristics and quality,” Emery insisted. “We need Mesut Ozil.

“Every player wants to play and be okay to help the team when we need.

“The frustration is the same for everybody when they didn’t play in a match.

“But I spoke with him and with regularity in the season, telling him what we need from him and he has the commitment to help us and the quality and the characteristics to help us.”