The Gunners are facing up to the prospect of attempting to overhaul their squad on a severely restricted budget as the monetary effects of the coronavirus pandemic are set to be compounded by a fourth consecutive season without Champions League football.
They are seeking ways to free up funds to attract new signings and are willing to sell Ozil to rid the club of his £350,000-a-week wage. Arsenal made Ozil available last summer for similar reasons but no club was willing to take on his salary.
The 31-year-old endured a complex relationship with former head coach Unai Emery but the situation improved when Mikel Arteta replaced him last December.
Ozil started all 10 Premier League games under Arteta prior to the Premier League's suspension due to the coronavirus in March yet he was left out of an expanded 20-man squad for Wednesday's 3-0 defeat at Manchester City.
Arteta publicly stated after the match that decision was made for "tactical reasons" and subsequently hinted at fitness issues, adding that as soon as there are signs he "wanted to perform at the level he can do... I'll treat him like anybody else."
Although there is no suggestion whatsoever that the Spaniard is being influenced in his team selection, sources have told ESPN that there are senior figures at the club who view Ozil's wage as a burden incompatible with the belt-tightening required elsewhere.
That view is also partly informed by Ozil's status as the only player to refuse to take a 12.5% pay cut for 12 months, as personally requested by Arteta during talks with the first-team squad back in April. In that context, leaving him out of the matchday squad at the Etihad Stadium altogether despite being able to name nine substitutes under revised rules appeared particularly significant.
Ozil's relationship with Arteta remains professional, however, and he is keen to fight for his first-team place before seeing out the final year of his contract which expires in 2021.
His lavish wage -- a club-record figure agreed in January 2018 -- is partly based on Ozil's huge commercial appeal and therefore there is some financial benefit to Arsenal in keeping him for the 2020-21 campaign.
It remains to be seen whether they would be prepared to subsidise part of his salary to help interested clubs -- Fenerbahce were among several sides monitoring the situation last summer -- but Ozil is settled in London having joined the club from Real Madrid in 2013 for £42.4 million and will not agitate for a move.