Arsenal playmaker Mesut Ozil has emerged as a surprise transfer target for Barcelona, who are looking for a potential replacement for Andres Iniesta next season.

The Germany international has continued his contract standoff with the Gunners, and it is understood that the club will cash in on his services, should they find no breakthrough in negotiations this summer.

According to The Express, via Don Balon, Barcelona are planning a surprise attempt to sign the World Cup winner as they look to find a suitable successor to Iniesta.

Club-captain Iniesta has been a credible performer for the Catalan giants over the years, but his future remains uncertain with his contract discussions put to a halt until the summer.

On the other hand, the Gunners are in a similar position with Ozil, but it is rather the player’s demands which have hindered a proposed extension at the Emirates.

The former Real Madrid ace is said to want 200 percent increase on his current £140,000-a-week wages, and this is something the Gunners are unlikely to match owing to their shrewd wage policy under Arsene Wenger.

Ozil has looked off-colour for much of the second half of the campaign, but he is nevertheless said to be the subject of interest from Barcelona, who have a previous transfer history with the playmaker.

The 28-year-old had been days away from linking up with Barcelona in the summer of 2010, but the lack of intent from then-boss Pep Guardiola pulled the plug on the proposed deal.

Ozil followed to link up with rivals Real Madrid for the next few years before he made the switch to north London for a club-record £42.5 sum in the summer of 2013.

One of Ozil’s key demands at Arsenal remains Champions League football, and there is a minor possibility of this happening, should the club win the remaining four games of the campaign.

Image – Getty

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