Inter Milan have refused to rule out a move for Arsenal playmaker Mesut Ozil but are pessimistic over their chances of striking a deal with the Gunners during the January transfer window.
Ozil, 28, is in the final year of his contract at the Emirates with it looking increasingly likely he will leave the north London club on a free transfer next summer along with Alexis Sanchez, who finds himself in an identical position.
The Germany international will be free to talk to foreign clubs on 1 January to discuss a contract that would begin after the expiry of his current deal at the Emirates this summer. But Arsenal can still cash in on the former Real Madrid star during the winter window.
Inter are among the short list of clubs credited with interest in the player, and while he hasn't ruled out a move for the Gunners star, Inter sporting director Piero Ausilio has played down talk of a winter move.
"We are studying our squad, we have scouts everywhere and they look at every kind of player," Ausilio told Premium Sport. "I don't think players like him [Ozil] will be leaving in January.
"Luciano Spalletti knows this team has room for improvement, that is what we are working on."
Another Arsenal first-teamer in Shkodran Mustafi has also been linked with a move to the Nerazzurri this year, with the Italian giants failing with a move for the Germany international on the final day of the summer transfer window.
Arsenal's demands proved to be too high for the club but Inter are still considering the possibility of bringing in another recruit at the back.
A new centre-back? We are looking for new opportunities," Ausilio continued. "But we have [Danilo] D'Ambrosio and other Primavera team players."