Arsenal news: Robert Pires claims 'maestro' Mesut Ozil is on a level with Dennis Bergkamp

Ozil has added more goals to his game this season

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The Independent Football

Former Arsenal midfielder Robert Pires has called for Mesut Ozil to sign a new contract at the Emirates and says the German has finally taken on Dennis Bergkamp as the Gunners’ “maestro”.

Ozil has been in fine form for Arsenal this season, but a contract cloud has hung over his head, with Arsene Wenger insisting he must sign a long-term deal if he is to be considered in the same breath as Bergkamp.

The World Cup winner, who managed 19 assists last season, has added goals to his game this term, bagging seven already – just one short of his total for the entirety of the previous campaign.

And as a result of this new-found selfishness in front of goal – Ozil only has one assist this season – Pires believes the 28-year-old is already at Bergkamp’s level, despite Wenger’s assertions.

"Mesut Ozil has very good qualities. He can normally score a minimum of 12 goals during the Premier League," Pires told

"In my time the maestro was Dennis Bergkamp and now it is Mesut Ozil. I love them both because they play very good football but they play for the team.

"Something has clicked. What's happened in the head is like a click because he's scored a lot of goals.

"This is a difference between last season with Mesut Ozil and now because he's thinking just for himself. Sometimes when you are in front of the target it is important to score."

Ozil only has 17 months left on his current deal at Arsenal with talks becoming protracted, although Wenger revealed last month that discussions regarding an extension were “moving along”.