The Arsenal manager has always insisted he would keep his star duo until the end of their contracts, even if it meant losing them for nothing.
But now he has dramatically changed his stance on the pair after being in contract talks with them for over a year.
When asked if he had placed a deadline for them to sign new deals, Wenger said: “No, not at the moment. Once you are in our kind of situation we have envisaged every kind of solution.”
And asked if that could mean they could leave in January and said: “Yes, it’s possible.”
Wenger’s change of tune could well be linked with the dip in form suffered by both players, with Sanchez especially suffering failure when his country Chile were eliminated in World Cup qualifying this week.
The 28-year-old has looked nowhere near his best for Arsenal this term with just one Europa League goal after seeing a £60million move to Manchester City fall through. Ozil has not found the net this term.
But Wenger remains optimistic both will eventually sign new deals even though that looks overly hopeful.
“I always said that the fact that we didn’t find an agreement last year doesn’t mean the player will necessarily leave,” he said.
“Both players look happy here and overall I hope that the situation can be turned around. At the moment, we are not close enough to announce anything.”
Contract issues are not the only thing on Wenger’s mind with Shkodran Mustafi now ruled out for six weeks after picking up a hamstring injury on Germany duty. With Laurent Koscielny facing a fitness test today, Arsenal could well be short at Watford tomorrow.
“I don’t think Mustafi will be back until the next international break,” said Wenger. “It’s always difficult to predict the situation because the player I least expected to lose during the break was Mustafi.
“First of all, I was not sure he would play. Secondly, Germany had already qualified so I didn’t expect him to be out injured as the games would be less intense. He didn’t play in the first game, and we lost him in the second game against Azerbaijan at home. We have to cope with that now.”