Özil: Not The Cause But Certainly The Solution To Arsenal’s Problems

…or one of them, at least.

Thanks, Mesut. I was thinking of taking the weekend off…

In case you are one of the three people who didn’t see last night’s social media post:

So, Mesut was/is an Arsenal fan. There is surely only a matter of time before photos from his youth in Gelsenkirchen appear. A young boy looking out of his window onto the caged pitches below, surrounded by photos of Vieira, Bergkamp and a tatty picture of Marc Overmars scoring at Old Trafford. The unspoken dream of one day freeing himself from the lowly Bundesliga to reach Arsenal...

OK, all facetiousness aside, no matter how many followers you have, you aren’t ‘one of us’ which was the message his PR team was putting out. Oh, and he isn’t leaving Arsenal on loan. Fair play, if that’s your attitude; the club gave you a contract and that’s our burden.

The timing stinks to everyone bar his fan club. A cynical attempt to pitch this as a straight battle between the player and Unai Emery off the back of a bad performance in the Europa League. Özil vs. Emery; the title fight. An unwelcome return to player power for the Spaniard. Just when you thought it was safe to go back into coaching…

It worked to a certain degree. The volume of #IStandWithMesut comments increased as did the ludicrous proposition that Enos gives a toss about the stand-off. It’s a local issue for the board to deal with, just keep me updated, boys. If Enos cared about Özil, he’d have acted before now. The German isn’t the favoured son of the owner nor is he about to “bin off” the coach over the issue just because it’s the cheaper option. He genuinely isn’t.

Unattractive

Fundamentally, Arsenal isn’t that attractive an option right now, not for the elite coaches which is where popular opinion says we should be looking for the next coach. No disrespect to Unai but he isn’t considered to be in the elite group. He wasn’t on the club’s radar until late in the recruitment process but even then, I don’t think Arteta would have found the situation any different regarding Özil.

The second problem is that in giving in to Özil now, the club makes the head coach job a poisoned chalice. Giving in to Özil by sacking the coach or at the very least neutering him, means the club backs the player over the squad. This isn’t about Elneny or Jenkinson and the collective; it’s about one player: Mesut Özil.

If Arsenal back him, they can’t invest in players who can bring us into the top four once again. What message does that send to potential coaches? “Don’t expect much from us, we haven’t got any cash. But, hey, we’ve got Mesut Özil, he’s better than Zidane and as long as you do as he says, you’re alright.”

Arsenal suits decided Özil is expendable. Unai Emery hasn’t issued a ‘back me or sack me’ ultimatum this early in his reign; he doesn’t need to because the club is perfectly well aware of the situation.

FFP is driving the decision as much as footballing reasons. The salary is a millstone around a Europa League club’s neck and no matter what anyone says, Özil isn’t going to take us back to the Champions League. He simply isn’t; that’s not his style. He doesn’t grab a team by the scruff of the neck and haul them to victory.

Tall Tales

A supremely gifted individual, he needs others to do that kind of psychological bullying for him. Once that happens, he can shine. Except we don’t have that kind of player and anyone who showed any inclination at upsetting the applecart during late-era Wenger was shown the door.

Stories in this morning’s media point to his agents briefing that he won’t leave on loan this summer; it’s permanent or nothing. That’s Arsenal’s problem in a nutshell but also Özil’s as well. Loan deal suggests six months, maybe a year; insecurity which, for a man who is about to get married, is unwelcome.

There are two-year deals to be had but they are hard to come by. In reality, Team Mesut is backing the club into a corner: you want him gone, you’re losing him on a free. I suspect few clubs are inclined to match his current deal with a fee thrown in; Özil’s representatives are looking to leverage his way out of the club with no financial loss.

I don’t blame them. Gazidis blinked and gave him the deal; did Ivan already know he was leaving so it wouldn’t be his problem to deal with or was he just thinking short-term? Mustn’t lose Alexis and Özil for nothing; think of the flak. Whichever is the truth, his reputation is toast.

However, none of this alters the situation: for the good of the club, Özil must leave. With his salary, we can buy two or three players who improve the squad. If Mesut, as his team are trying to insinuate, is one of us, he’ll know what to do.

You Don’t Stand Alone

Which means we can then look at shifting on the likes of Mkhitaryan who doesn’t deliver given his salary level either. There are others at lesser levels whose money seems to be better spent elsewhere. The sum of the situation is that the squad needs a total overhaul and while we like the champagne lifestyle, we only have a beer income.

There’s much work to do and while it may seem that Özil is being picked on, just remember who put the player front and centre today.

Mesut Özil.

’til Tomorrow.

91 thoughts on “Özil: Not The Cause But Certainly The Solution To Arsenal’s Problems

  1. consolsbob says:

    It’s a mess is what it is.

    Modern football in a nutshell. The ownership ‘model’, player power, social media, money. They all combine to screw what used to be a proud football club.

    Most people in the club and the game don’t even know what that means.

  2. C says:

    @Bill

    No, I have said playing Ramsey instead of Ozil and then trying to build a whole midfield around Ramsey is pointless. If you have actually read my post, I have stated that while not my kind of player, he is a player that can help but NOT when he is in that ACM role but playing off of that. I have also stated that he is NOT good in the build up or picking a pass and is a decent passer BUT his late runs can be effective.

    Basically, Ramsey is suited to play as a cog in a team with creative players and goal scorers around him so that he is almost a tertiary at best piece who is capable in that role. In my diamond and attack, he is basically there to help cover in midfield with Guendouzi and Torriera and in attack he simply makes late runs and doesn’t get involved in the build. Guendouzi will do the carrying and linking allowing Ozil to float about underneath Aubameyang and Lacazette. Then Ramsey can make late runs and thats wjat he is best at.

  3. C says:

    The one thing I am struggling to wrap my head around is: if the club and Emery really want to sell Ozil, then is sitting him despite making him ‘one of you 5 Club Captains’ the answer? Wouldn’t it be better to play him so that he can show potential suitors that he is still capable of creating those 2-3 moments of magic that can help decide a match?

    He is a creator of both directly and indirectly that needs a midfield base and attackers to assist him.

  4. bt8 says:

    Lose him on a free and move on. There’s an executive decision.

  5. XiNi says:

    C,

    Before he signed the 350k contract, he didn’t exactly have as much suitors as Sanchez did. Or Ramsey. Arsenal just didn’t want to lose him and Sanchez at the same time.
    Every club out there knows what kind of player Ozil is, he doesn’t need to show it on the pitch now before they’ll come for him. They are either interested in signing him or not. They won’t because of his wage.
    You might want to know that I’m a big fan of Ozil, but I’ve been a fan of Arsenal way before. This Ozil situation is tiring. I wish he’d left with Sanchez. We’d know we’re starting from the scratch by now.
    Up the Gunners.

  6. MikeSA says:

    I see arseblog is also having a go at Ozil for his “unhelpful” post.

    The latest line is that the club are trying to “force” him out.

    That’s not exactly friendly or ethical behaviour from the club, so why would he give a monkey’s crutch if its helpful to the club or not?

    So he’s supposed to smile and wave and be nice?

    He should “do what’s right”……for the club……. who’re trying their best to make his life shit?

    So, to all those he seem to think players should just lie down and die for he club, how many of you left a job or took a pay cut to your detriment for no other reason than because you wanted to improve the share price for the owner?

    One of the things I have taken pride in from time to time is when we behaved well as a club.

    Refusal to embrace the living wage, behaving like cunts with players, doesnt exactly get that front and centre for me somehow……….can’t imagine why…….

    Does anyone not think that maybe other players take a look and wonder if they’re also going to be treated like shit by the club if they suddenly become persona non grata for some reason?

    Behaving like a bunch of arseholes isn’t going to engender a sense of loyalty from your existing players, nor is it going to entice many others the fans deem to be “good enough” to choose the club either.

    If you behave like a poes, people are going to treat you like a poes, its all quite simple really.

  7. consolsbob says:

    MikeSA,

    But Enos are a bunch of arseholes.

    By the way, what is a poes?

  8. andy1886 says:

    The level of Ivan’s incompetence is staggering really. In two years we’ve gone from having assets worth circa £100m if we’d sold them then to having instead a pair of albatross’ worth next to nothing but dragging us down to the tune of around £30m a year. Way to go Ivan, way to go.

  9. Jonnygunner says:

    Good afternoon all
    Thank you YW for taking time out on another of your days,to deliver another post.
    I would’ve posted….ahem….earlier 😉…..but I was fitting a new expansion vessel on my boiler……I’ve just read that back….no inuendos please chaps.
    CBob……I was in a loft yesterday….yeap,I know-I live in the fast lane of life….and I was fitting a fan(for a bathroom).Ever since I told you to fit one some years ago-and you didn’t listen to me….I always think of you when fitting one!Someone I’ve never met pops into my head when doing a certain aspect of my work-now thats weird 😁

  10. Bill says:

    Yogi

    Interesting post. Mesut could solve the whole problem by simply playing football at a level somewhere close to expectations. He has been given plenty of chances this season and if team Ozil had considered the idea actually creating an assist occasionally none of this would have happened. If he had done that the manager wouldn’t have dropped him and it would help the team and everyone would be happy.

  11. Bill says:

    MikeSA

    Not sure why team Mesut felt the need to fire the double barrel middle finger salute. He has a huge wage and a 3 year contract so he holds all of the trump cards in his hand. As you point out Mesut does not have to go anywhere or do anything he does not want. If he wanted to play regular football with a big club in the CL he could have gone to Paris for the rest of the season.

    The thing I don’t understand is why you think the club has not done right by him. They have not slandered him in any way. The manager has not said anything bad about him. Emery has given him plenty of chances earlier this season but he has not produced. Emery tried again to get him going again by using him as an impact sub against ManU and starting him against Cardiff but Ozil basically sleep walked thru both of those games.

  12. Bill says:

    C:
    The one thing I am struggling to wrap my head around is:if the club and Emery really want to sell Ozil, then is sitting him despite making him ‘one of you 5 Club Captains’ the answer?Wouldn’t it be better to play him so that he can show potential suitors that he is still capable of creating those 2-3 moments of magic that can help decide a match?

    He is a creator of both directly and indirectly that needs a midfield base and attackers to assist him.

    I realize that stats can be misleading but if Ozil was actually creating 3 magical moments in every game then he would certainly have a few more assists. For the last 3 years we have made excuses for his dropping productivity by blaming a lack of strikers and blaming arsene for not coaching him up. This season none of those excuses are valid by he has been even less effective. He still has some value based on his reputation but if we continue to use him and he continues to be ineffective, the rest of the world will realize that is no longer creating those magical moments and his reputation and value will fade even more.

  13. andy1886 says:

    Bill,

    I expect that MO knows all too well that he has no future at the club, this is about damage limitation for the player. To get the best deal and have the widest choice of suitors when he does move on he has to try and maintain the image of a top class player. When you’re not doing the business on the field then the best tactic to divert attention from that fact is to paint it as a matter of personalities clashing rather than a result of performances not meriting a starting place. As it is there are enough fans out there quite happy to perpetuate the idea which works to his advantage.

  14. Ras says:

    Excellent post as to be expected YW.

    It was never going to be a smooth ride after 20 years and more avec AW. It is as plain as day light that the assembled ranks of players are a miss mash of a non existent transfer policy overseen by AW, Gazidis overseen by Enos.

    A great part of the problems is that there is not ONE World class defender at the Club. All would generally agree that Kos is still the current number one . What does that truly say about the last 10 years at
    Arsenal.
    The Club have not been able to nurture from within or go out any spend the money on a defender(s) and build from the defence.

    I am on record as stating I can’t fathom what Emery is doing. A back 3 or a 4. He changes so much. Maybe the Players are confused. Is the constant chopping and changing because he himself is unsure? Maybe He just does not trust the Players?

    We have 2 Goal scorers in the Team. Who else contributes? Our current method of attack is through Sead down the left and thats it. We simply could not break down Bate.

    The Ozil situation. Purely from a football perspective he is a talented Player. He possesses talents as a player that others can only dream of, however Is he right for Arsenal at this juncture that is another question? There is not the personnel in football terms at Arsenal to help bring out his qualities and so is seen as a luxury. The Game against Bate would in my opinion have been perfect for Ozil we lacked the final quality in the final third.

    From top to bottom its a mess. For 20 years The Club was blessed with having a Manager who was totally adept at dealing with the Media etc. In terms of the Media and the Message the Club is trying to portray etc is non existent. Emery is still learning getting to grips with English and its nuances. You would think the Club would help more to engender confidence.

    Sadly I see us being 3-5 years away if that from being able to compete and sustain Top 4 place.

  15. Abdul says:

    Ozil has got every right to give Emery some grieve. If Unai is being pressured to frozen his best creative player as the narrative goes then he must be very weak manager. If Ozil is being forced to leave against his will, why would he act nicely towards Emery? His media team know Ozil has huge fanbase and currently Unai’s popularity is shrinking among Arsenal fans. It is a leverage and definitely his team are going to use it.

  16. Chukwudi says:

    Ozil will always make a difference, we have seen him do that before now. About buying 2 or 3 players, who and who will play and create as ma you chances as Ozil?

  17. C says:

    Bill,

    He might but then again he creates, for instance, the pass to Sead or the ball to Bellerin or the space he creates making a run that creates space for others. The point I’m making is that he is capable of those moments and he no longer has to be the player that makes the final ball but he is the player that is able to unlock a defense or create that moment that NOBODY else in this squad can. Our attack at present is based PURELY on Sead being able to whip a cross in and managers see that. The arguement that Ozil doesn’t track back is useless at this point given how shit defensively we have been without him.

    Plain and simple, we lack any sort of creativity and we can’t defend so why not play him especially when you have 2 of the most clinical strikers in Europe when they get chances.

  18. C says:

    The other thing that is so confusing is that Emery made Ozil one of his 5 Captains and then when he does play Ozilbhe gives him the armband.

    If Mhkitaryan or Iwobi or even Suarez were creating and offering so much then sure, I get it, but they aren’t.

  19. MikeSA says:

    consolsbob:
    MikeSA,

    But Enos are a bunch of arseholes.

    By the way, what is a poes?

    A “poes” is a very expressive South African version of calling someone a cunt.

    It’s actually Afrikaans, but all language groups in SA use it interspersed in their own language.

    Something very similar is the word “doos”, which can mean a box, as in a cardboard box, or a box as in cunt as well.

    There are few languages as expressive in terms of swearing as Afrikaans, and many terms have been adopted within our other 10 official languages, as have various expressions or slang from others.

    A Zulu, Xhosa, Sotho, or Tswana speaking person might often greet others using the slang term “Eyta bra” to greet someone, and English speakers might also respond to them with it as well.

    That actually comes from the Afrikaans “Hey daar, broer”, or, in English “Hey there, brother”.

    South Africans are a little odd in some ways.

    “Just now” in SA means “in a little while”, not immediately.

    A “couple of beers” does not necessarily mean two beers either.

    Just a few examples.

  20. MikeSA says:

    Well, it seems like a few of the players and a few ex players (including Bergkamp himself), seem to be fairly supportive of Ozil based on some of the responses to his post.

    If everyone thought the same as Bill I don’t think we’d be seeing any of that, they’re not all is dumb as Merson and dog only knows what crawled up Keown’s arse over this.

    By all accounts Ozil is well-liked in the dressing room, so I do think this situation has caused shit in the squad and at the club, and it doesn’t look like Ozil is the outcast many fans assume or would like him to be.

    Its not good for the club, but it is what it is.

    Thinking up shit like “oh, he should just do this or that” is bizarre and just muddled quite frankly.

    I want to see our club doing well, not behaving like cunts and turning the whole thing into a circus.

    This is just a gigantic clusterfuck, and the club is handing it very, very poorly.

  21. consolsbob says:

    Jonnygunner,

    Yes, the mind is strange.

    In a mirror image, every time I have shower in winter and have to open the bloody window to get rid of the steam and damp, I think of you.

  22. Bill says:

    C

    All last summer after the hiring was announced you indicated you had followed Emery’s career closely for a decade and you were effusive with praise. You indicated how meticulous and neurotic he was about his study and preparation. I assume Emery studied film from last season extensively to prepare for his interview and especially after he was hired and I assume he has studied the film of this season. Do you honestly think that Emery would have dropped Ozil if his film study demonstrated that Ozil was actually doing critical that does not show up on the stat sheet and no one else can do?

    You have studied Emery more then any of us. I would love to know your theory on why this is happening?

  23. Kawooya Henry Goooner Kampala-Uganda says:

    Thanks so much for being EMERY’s spokes person. Hopefully you don’t share Iwobi’s and Guendouzi’s match day allowances with him to have them play each and every match. And as far as Arsenal squad is concerned,i’m embarrassed by your assessment of O”ZIL’s impact to the team. Only a Rugby fan can argue that the trio of IWOBI , KOLASINAK and GUENDOUZI are more impact players in modern foot-ball than O”zil OR even that they are more creative than him. Simple logic, we went 22 games unbeaten with O”zil involved in each and every game. BUT since YOUR Emery claiming to be a COACH dropped him, the team has been faltering . Ooooooooh i’m forgetting my RAMBO who is heading for JUVE who recently revealed the TRUE COACH your Emery is. That he is a coach who believes mainly in defensive minded midfielders than in attack minded midfielders. Think is the reason he advised the board to withdraw RAMBO’s contract offer. EMERY ISN’T FIT FOR ARSENAL FC and CAN’T LEAD OUR LOVELY CLUB TO GREATER HEIGHTS EVEN IF YOU AVAIL HIM WITH A BILLION POUNDS TO INVEST IN THE MARKET.

  24. LSG says:

    I think the role of Raul in this is of great relevance potentially and changes this from an Emery v Ozil showdown exclusively. Sadly, no outcome is actually that good for Arsenal in this whole affair.

  25. Dukey says:

    I’m now convinced the ostracism of erzil is coming from above Emery. There is no way any manager would not play him with the toothless in experienced midfield we currently have.

  26. Bill says:

    Limestone

    At this point its going to be tough to fix things. However, a positive outcome to the whole affair could have and would have happened if Ozil had produced when he was given his chances. If he had done that he never would have been dropped in the first place.

    The club gave him about 1/3 of a season to see if he could get back some of the old magic and then they used him as an impact sub against ManU and gave him another chance to start against Cardiff and you saw how that turned out. The club also gave him the option of a loan to PSG. To me it seems like Emery has tried.

    As Andy said, the Ozil vs. Emery helps to distract from steadily decreasing effectiveness of the player. I can only speculate but I suspect Emery sees a combination decreased effectiveness along with supoptimal effort from the player to fix the problem. However, the club can’t open up and tell the truth because that might damage whatever value his reputation as a great player still brings in the transfer market.

  27. LSG says:

    I think the immediate and principal key to progress is getting into the CL—not clearing salary space, though that would help. This has to be addressed in the summer however while CL qualification depends on what the team can achieve this season.

    The whole Ozil circus can certainly affect the team, morale in the dressing room, and put the club and manager under distracting pressure. The only remedy is to go on a good run. Can Ozil be helpful in certain games? I think he can. I would play him in the next BATE game at home. Going forward, Emery could be pragmatic and start him in games he can help and have him in the bench on others. I don’t really see an argument for leaving him out of the squad on most occasions. I think Raul and Emery have decided unwisely to leave him out even on occasions where wisdom would dictate at least having him on the bench even if he hasn’t historically been a great game changer from the bench. I think they want him to leave and are trying to make it uncomfortable at Arsenal, but I don’t think it is working and there were better ways to deal with this. I always thought that Ozil might have a tough time under the new regime and that the huge contract would cause some problems.

  28. LSG says:

    Bill,

    I certainly think Ozil could have played better more consistently over the first part of the season. However, he hasn’t been as uniquely bad as the decisions about his participation by Emery would suggest. If the reports that suggest that Ozil pulled himself out of the Spurs match when he learned he wasn’t going to start are true, I would certainly fault that attitude as well.

  29. LSG says:

    consolsbob,

    I agree. Kroenke is classless. And I agreed completely with your first comment as well. Perfect storm of modern football.

  30. C says:

    Bill,

    If Emery was so low on Ozil, let me ask you: would he have made him one of his Captains? More to that, whe he has played him, who has he given the armband to?

    Will the pass yo Sead against Burnley show up in that stats? How about the one to Bellerin? How about the dumby Ozil did twice, one for a goal by Aubameyang and one for a Lacazette goal? How about Mhkitaryan, has he done or performed so well that he should be ahead of Ozil.

    I have followed Emery and I do think he is a quality manager but one thing THROUGHOUT his career is that he doesn’t always do well with high price/waged players even back to his time winning 3 Europa League crowns. If the team was playing well, absolutely it would make sense but there also comes a time when you have a squad and you play the players you have and push them out during the transfer window. Do you, Bill, honestly think there would be thus much discussion about Ozil is the likes of Mhkitaryaj, Iwobi, Suarez(who even at the time I said is a player who connects the dots between defense and attack) or the attack as a whole was playing better?

    You once said something to the likes of, Mine as well play Ramsey while he is hear, does the same not apply to somebody you have made Captain?

  31. consolsbob says:

    LSG,

    Itks been a long time, my friend, since it felt like I supported a football club. We have been here before on this blog but I find ambivalence in my approach to supporting ‘Arsenal’ now.

    Just what does that even mean anymore?

  32. consolsbob says:

    Yogi.

    Bloody Newport County have this three stripes on the front of their shirt.

  33. LSG says:

    consolsbob,

    It is a crucial question. More and more it seems to me to mean participating in a community of discussion about Arsenal with people I like to hear from, who have insights and a bit of wit. Since Kroenke’s odious neglect, it is difficult to see what AFC is or stands for. Where the club and the players in this reckoning? I appreciate young players coming through and those who have served for several years by playing hard. Many just follow players now—hence Ozil’s loyal legions on social media. I really dislike celebrity culture however.

  34. consolsbob says:

    LSG,

    You and I both!

    The difference now xto when I was younger, and football was football, is very apparent in any school playground. How many local kids do I see at my grandsons school who wear, say, Barca shirts rather than an English club?

    Never mind that once they would have been Plymouth Argyle fans first and Man U or Arsenal fans second.

    Good point about the support of ‘brand players’. A bit like the support amongst many for Arsene rather than the club.

    Celebrity culture indeed.

  35. Dukey says:

    ozils latest properganja stunt has reinforced my mind that it’s a war v him and the club.

  36. YW says:

    I know; middle one hosts sponsors name.

    However, it’s not an Adidas kit so there’s still hope…

  37. YW says:

    LSG

    > I think the immediate and principal key to progress is getting into the CL—not clearing salary space, though that would help.

    Can MO get us into the top four? No, I don’t think so. Thus, while getting into the CL is the important target, restructuring the squad is likely to be the route which gets us there.

  38. LSG says:

    YW,

    Is top 4 possible this season in your reckoning? We are still in the hunt. I noted you said in the post that he isn’t the sort of player to drag us into the top 4 through his heroics. I agree. However, I think he is a fine player who can help the team play better which gives us a better chance, when used judiciously, to get into the top 4 or win the Europa League. I think the opportunity to use him begins with Bate at home and there will be games Emery should use him. There is no more squad reshaping that can take place until the summer. And there is no way this controversy is helping the team or coach. Unless not playing him now leads to an agreement in the next several weeks that he will go, what is being accomplished other than some strong arm tactics that might not work? I think using Ozil at home and having him on the bench could help the team. I don’t think declaring Ozil not the sort of player really gets at the nuances of the situation. Even if he isn’t an automatic starter who will carry us into top 4 with amazing and consistently effective permanent, he doesn’t have to be that good to still help increase our chances since he is a good player.

  39. Blue Yonder says:

    “He who is not with me is against me” (sort of thing.) If he cared about Arsenal the way he says, he would do everything he could to demonstrate it. But he doesn’t.

    I happen to like Ozil but cannot support either his frequent absences or his lacklustre performances. Nor the fact that he has effectively given himself a Europa winter break.
    I would like to ask those currently criticizing Emery for his handling of Ozil just what else he could do to motivate him. He tried building him up and giving him a captaincy but that didn’t work. He has gone to sitting him out and that hasn’t worked either. They tried to loan him out but he wouldn’t go. Exactly what else remains that hasn’t been tried?

  40. LSG says:

    I want to feel proud of my club for its values and practices, enjoy its entertaining and intensely played football, and see the team winning and challenging.

    We have a way to go on all fronts.

  41. Oludotun says:

    I never expected this Mesut issue will become a matter of discourse….and it’s getting messy.
    I don’t think the club hierarchy and the coach has handled this particularly well….except there have been transfer discussions where the two sides have irreconcilable positions.

    Fine, he might not have matched Emery’s expectation for pitch ethics…but
    He earns 350k weekly..
    A very talented player…
    Cool headed all the while…

    Arsenal is stuck with Ozil because of the wage…then maximise it. What’s the essence of game/player management that doesn’t fit your most creative head into the tactics?
    He hasn’t claimed to be a Neymar or Messi…no tantrums here and there….yet he was frozen out of seemingly “smaller matches”.

    I initially didn’t read any deep meaning to the tweet until the analyses from different quarters…
    The PR team are trying to play smart too…or else, Ozil keeps loosing a battle which nobody knew when the war was declared.

    Emery has probably created a Neymaric issue now….better management in terms of play time and tactical adjustment would have helped.
    This issue is painting Arsenal in a bad light, cos the player will soon leave (even the career will also be over), but the instution remains with the history to cope with.

    Chai….the media again has done something again.

    I thought how Wenger was handled was bad enough, and his exit will bring in fresh air to the club. However, 6 month down the line, the toxicity is building up again.
    Arsenal FC…!!!

  42. Blue Yonder says:

    Dukey,
    If so, it is unwise. He has a few years left as a top player whereas the organization is endless by comparison. What would he hppe to win except a pyrrhic victory?

  43. Blue Yonder says:

    Kawooya Henry Goooner Kampala-Uganda: Think is the reason he advised the board to withdraw RAMBO’s contract offer.

    Kawooya Henry Goooner Kampala-Uganda,

    Emery was scarcely on board when the offer was withdrawn. In any event, it would have been either Gazidis or Sanllehi. Besides that, Emery went out of his way to state that he wished to build his team around Aaron Ramsey. Let’s not re-shape events to fit the argument.

  44. YW says:

    LSG

    We can make the top four but need others to slip up. United look like injuries are beginning to pile up which will hurt. Also, if they lose to Chelsea and PSG next week, that’s three key games lost and Solskjaer gets a harsh lesson. Not sure they will recover quickly, especially as they face Liverpool soon. And Chelsea? Well, they are on course to lose their next EPL away game 8 – 0 so who knows how they will perform!

  45. The Arsesores says:

    Ozil is not going anywhere and it is not about the player, the manager or the club.

    He is paid too much for what he delivers. When his contract runs out he will be over 30 and will get a substantial wage on a free. He is happy with his deal at Arsenal and hell or high water won’t move him

    Any movement away from Arsenal now and he will reduce his salary significantly and leave him open to the vagueries and insults of the open market. Anyone would rather the insults that they are paid too much, than have to realise by how much. Tough titty, suck it up.

    Not understanding this is what makes the club look second rate. Demonstrating that we are being held over a barrel by one mistake, that one player can break our fragile bank is what makes us look like we can’t compete. We should be pretending that it is all part of football God’s will instead we daily demonstrate that we can’t cope.

    But Ozil isn’t going anywhere.

  46. Mattack says:

    The Ozil debate is easily solved. Ozil gets his head down in training, when selected he at least tries to apply Emery’s game plan and, most importantly, produces chances / assists for Laca and Auba. Anything less leaves Emery justification for leaving him out.

  47. Exit the Lemmig says:

    It’s difficult to separate Ozil’s recent decision to walk away from the German national team and his ongoing impasse at Arsenal. Yes, he became an undeserving lightning rod for criticism after Germany’s abysmal World Cup showing in 2018 but had been a shadow of his former self on national duty for at least 2 years prior and the informed view in Germany and beyond was that Joachim Low was close to omitting him from the squad entirely. In hindsight Mesut must regret posing for photographs with Turkey’s reviled President Erdogan but the justification of ‘respecting the highest office of my family’s country’ simply doesn’t wash when the reciprocated mirror image could include any member of the Nazi elite post 1933. (Would Mario Balotelli pose for a selfie with Alessandra Mussolini?) It’s also illustrative that the overwhelming majority of his Mannschaft team mates’ failure to support him in his decision may lend some credence to his claim that the DFB (and its President Reinhard Grindel in particular) are institutionally racist. Here’s the rub: Is Ozil blaming alleged discrimination and racism for his poor performances for Germany or does he think he has performed adequately and the animus comes after the fact? If it’s the latter, we have a delusional snowflake (albeit a world class one) on our books that we will not be able to shift unless we can find a club gauche enough to conflate the salary demands of a player who supplants ‘players, trophies or history’ with ‘somewhere he belongs’

  48. Bill says:

    I agree with Mattack. That would be a win/win fir everyone. I am certain Emery would be ecstatic if that happened. The team would be improved and the whole problem would be solved.

  49. LSG says:

    Mattack,

    Yes. Perhaps that is what he is doing in training recently. But Emery has to pick him and play him to determine further if Ozil can help the team when it counts. He’s hardly played him in 2019. Hopefully he starts v BATE and carved them open with great chances for Auba.

  50. Mattack says:

    LSG,

    Indeed it relies on Emery giving Ozil a chance (if deserved based on what he sees in training). We do not know what goes on behind the scenes but coaches often do not take kindly to players having a presence on social media in situations like this. Hopefully the relationship is not irrecovably broken down. Whatever people may feel about Ozil and his wages, all gooners will love him in the team if he is playing well.

  51. LSG says:

    Exit the Lemmig,

    Your comparison of WW2 era fascist dictators waging wars of expansion and a contemporary neoliberal conservative authoritarian in Erdogan is somewhat off. Erdogan is terrible but not really in that class. It was a mistake and hopefully Ozil regrets it, but I think you could make that point without such an exaggerated historical or political comparison.

  52. C says:

    Mattack,

    Here’s the the other thing that your sort of overlooking…at the end of the day Ozil is still a human being and sure futbol is his profession but FFS the storm and criticism he received not only from outside the German national team but from within it was ridiculous. Let me ask you, would you be able to do your job if those outside and inside, the very ones you have given your all for for years turned their back and blamed literally everything that went wrong on you? Would you, at your job, be able to continue on if you were being blamed for others failures?

    Has Ozil been producing at his best,probably not and at times even I have struggled to defend him, but he geta blamed for everything. When we don’t score goals its because Ozil isn’t creating enough, when we do score and lose its because he didn’t track back. Futbol is a team game, plain and simpleand if the team isn’t performing its the teams fault not one individual. The Invincibles were brilliant because rhey were a balanced team that had a defense that was already in place and Arsene added the attack which brought balance. Now, we have a team that can’r defend, no matter who is back there, and yet the focus is on Ozil not playing because he hasn’t been picked.

    I think Emery is a superb coach but he also seems to be trying to avoid a Neymar situation when in fact, part of it is of hia own making by giving Ozil the armband.

  53. LSG says:

    Mattack,

    Agree, if he performs, we’ll be behind him. But Emery has a social media account too and has to be prepared to deal with the realities of modern players and stars, which he seems not that good at—a real weakness at a big club. He’s not going to get a top job if he fails at Arsenal after PSG and especially if part of his failure is inability to manage Star players. So while I think the timing was not great and that there was a pr purpose behind the tweet, Ozil didn’t do anything over that was disruptive or disrespectful. Emery needs to show the same canniness and nuance in his dealings with Ozil and his team spirit as was displayed there. So far, Emery is not the subtle communicator or man manager—from the outside, of course. He seems blunt and not just because of his vague and unclear English. Hopefully he can learn to handle tho fa with more subtext and wisdom to preserve his authority. Or come out and be clear about any non-football reasons. I could respect that but it would be bad for the club’s image maybe.

  54. Mattack says:

    LSG,

    Fair points. I don’t blame Ozil and his team for their social media output. It is an annoying part of modern life (I’m an old git), but one that needs to be accepted. I was merely pointing out it might be making the situation worse. I only want what is best for The Arsenal. That is Ozil playing well for our club. Anything that gets in the way of that be it a perceived lack of application or the coach being unreasonable with a player or other players being precious about an employee getting the best remuneration possible pisses me off.

  55. Bill says:

    Limestone

    Its not very often that I have disagreed with you over the years but the idea that Ozil has not been given chances makes no sense. We have been talking about his dimininishing production for 3 years and the reason its come to a head this season is because he has been even less effective this season. He has been given 3 years to reverse the downward trend or at least hit some sort of plateau but it has not happened. IMO the only realistic argument for using him at this point is because our other options have been almost equally at ineffective.

  56. Bill says:

    I think Ozil’s effectiveness has been fading for several years however it feels like the recurring illnesses and the drop in production seemed to really accelerate after he signed the big contract. Obviously the apparent correlation may be just a coincidence but it has to raise some concern about the mentality of the player.

  57. Mattack says:

    C,

    I am a long term admirer of Ozil and still am. But The Arsenal is more important. I was really hopeful following the despicable treatment of Ozil by his national team and german football in general that he would produce a fantastic season for our club. Overall that has not happened when he played and cannot now he is not being picked for whatever reason. My original comment was a suggested way to get back in the team and prove the Arsenal doubters wrong, not to mention give the bird to the poes scapegoaters and worse in and around his former national team (thanks to MikeSA for poes).

    Of course the fact we still can’t defend is not down to Ozil and should not be blamed on him. That is down to our defenders tripping over their Sideshow Bob sized feet when not treading on rakes so that the handles smack into their faces…. Ultimately if they can’t be coached, they need to go. Bellerin and Holding have improved…. others not.

  58. Bill says:

    We have by far the best strikers and in Torreira we probably have the best DM of the ozil era but his production has cratered this season

  59. Mattack says:

    An Arsenal defender in training yesterday….

    Attachment

  60. LSG says:

    Mattack,

    That’s reasonable and I also am a bit of a curmudgeon about social media. It didn’t help. But I don’t think isolating and not even including him on the bench has helped either. If Ozil has had a problem being willing to be on the bench, then as condemn that in harsh terms. Basically I think there is plenty of blame to share around on this possibly between club officials like Raul etc…, the coach, the player, and the player’s team of agents and pr folks.

  61. Bill says:

    Since Ozil signed his new contract more then 12 months ago he has created a grand total of 2 assists in PL games

  62. consolsbob says:

    You know, Bill has a aerious point.

    If Ozil had made himself a fixture in the team because of his performances, he would be undropable.

    The fact that he isnkt even in the team suggests that he has not performed. After all, anyone remember being shocked when he stopped being on the teamsheet?

    Not really because he has been rarely on it. A great player would be the first name on any teams starting eleven. Even having the debate seems a little questionable.

  63. LSG says:

    Bill,

    I agree that he has been less and less effective and I was against giving him such a huge contract as an unwise investment (though I would have been ok with a less exorbitant wage and some bonus clauses if we could have negotiated better—needed Raul doing it and not Dick Law, AW and Gazidis but it was the last act of that regime and a very costly one. It probably also made keeping Rambo nearly impossible and we bungled selling him or signing him that Winter as well.)

    But my argument about this season is that Ozil hasn’t been any worse than Iwobi or Mkhitaryan. He’s been a little inferior in statistical production to Rambo but not so much that you wouldn’t rotate him in the side as well. He has had some chances but not as many as you might think and only one start in 2019. His more regular involvement earlier on corresponded with a better run of results though I wouldn’t claim those results were necessarily from good performances—some of them were awful actually. My point here is that he is a decent creative player which we often need and should use judiciously. Not using him, not even having him on the bench when the other options are pretty poor or extra defensive players (like 2 extra fullbacks when you have a 3CB formation already?!), and evidently alienating him makes little sense really. He’s pretty popular and team spirit and morale might be affected. I’m not here extolling him as the genius we have to cater to. I’m saying we need top 4 and Emery is a coach not a manager. He’s got two seasons plus an option for a third. He has to get us into the top 4 and his mission is to work with what the club has given him. One of those assets, however declining, is Ozil and he needs to figure out how to use him better and keep the team believing in top 4. I have concerns about how he has handled this up to this point. He doesn’t have to start Ozil all the time but if he doesn’t use him for Bate and in the next two home matches for significant roles when the team is really having difficulty making chances and taking shots because we are playing very predictably and don’t have Bellerin to overlap with width on the right, he is going to look very foolish without 3 straight wins ahead of Spurs away, United at home and Wolves away. Those are very tough fixtures and without 3 wins we will be out of Europa and likely after the 3 tougher fixtures nearly out of the race for top 4.
    Be pragmatic, have some subtlety and get this team going using every available resource is my position on the task ahead. And Ozil could help us in that, couldn’t he?

    I find your position perfectly reasonable, Bill, and clear. I only think taking a categorical position on Ozil isn’t going to maximize our chances to get into the CL this season. And that is a priority because I don’t really see the rebuilding being as successful or quick without CL money to enhance our revenues since KSE will not put in a penny to help and to attract a better class of players with a third year in Europa.

  64. MikeSA says:

    Bill:
    Limestone

    Its not very often that I have disagreed with you over the years but the idea that Ozil has not been given chances makes no sense. We have been talking about his dimininishing production for 3 years and the reason its come to a head this season is because he has been even less effective this season. He has been given 3 years to reverse the downward trend or at least hit some sort of plateau but it has not happened. IMO the only realistic argument for using him at this point is because our other options have been almost equally at ineffective.

    Bill, let’s just clear things up a little bit: you speak of “we” a lot of the time, when in actual fact you mean “I” (as in you).

    Not everyone is in agreement with some of your claimed absolutes.

  65. LSG says:

    I had no problem with dropping Ozil early on, to the bench or out of the squad initially. He hasn’t been great like a lot of our players. I think Emery had taken it too far and it could be detrimental. That’s the short version of my wordy post above!

  66. LSG says:

    Emery is a coach. He’ll have some input on players. But he’s not the manager. And Raul will sacrifice him quickly if he doesn’t succeed by next season. Success means getting back into the CL. That’s the job. He diean’t Have a long term project. It is two years. His third year is renewable. But really that’s it. This is a transition year—so not making it this year will be allowable. But he isn’t getting a contract again without working with what the club provides him. He isn’t going to be most responsible for the rebuild. It will be Raul and whoever he hires in place of Mislintat. Emery is pretty expendable after next season.

  67. LSG says:

    If Ozil has withdrawn from the squad or had a problem being on the bench instead of starting—that’s wrong. If the club is trying to force him out by making him uncomfortable and refusing to play him on policy rather than tactically/footballistically (so to speak), I object strongly as well. Classless behavior. Between those two extremes, I expect wisdom, professionalism and pragmatic considerations for getting into CL to prevail in this unhappy situation. I’m not seeing a lot of wisdom.

  68. consolsbob says:

    LSG,

    I can’t disagree with any of your posts on this matter either.

    Very wise but it does leave us a little bit discombobulated. Rather than the player, the coach is the problem. Either he is inflexible and poor at man management or he is too weak to coach a PL team. After all, as you say, he needs to deliver on the pitch to have a future in the game.

    I don’t like that scenario.

  69. LSG says:

    consolsbob,

    Me neither. I think we are in trouble if results don’t improve quickly and Emery does a better job handling Ozil in some perfect matches he could be involved with at home. The bigger problem however is what to make of Raul. He’s the one in charge of the direction now. Is he capable? Right for Arsenal, as opposed to Barca? What’s his approach and plan? Will he replace Sven properly? The only road for success under KSE is very very sharp recruitment of players like Torreira—22-4 yrs who can play now, get better, and have increased value if we have to sell them 3-4 years on, like Liverpool have managed to do.

  70. LSG says:

    If Emery doesn’t do a better job …
    sorry!

    It is worrisome no matter which angle we take…

  71. LSG says:

    Having expressed all this concerns, nevertheless, the chance is there for a positive season. We are not far off 4th and have an easier run in than Chelsea or MU. If we improve over these last very poor performances, win 3 home matches, get 6 or 7 from Spurs away/MU home/Wolves away (I know, optimistic!) then I think we will get top 4. Sure Watford and Leicester away aren’t easy but we have home games and no top 6 opponents after MU.

    Perhaps the draw will be kind in Europa and we get to a one off final with a chance…

    Home support needs to be strong. It is too soon to worry. It is just that right now I am on low reserves of satisfaction with the team, coach and club. Hoping to be inspired by a strong finish to the season.

  72. C says:

    Mattack,

    I can’t disagree with any of that. I do think Ozil has more to give and show us but I do think Emery (who I have backed for years) choice of Mhkitaryan over Ozil feels person. Ozil has also been asked to play a different sort of role, and lets see what happens next time he is called upon. What will be interesting is if he does play well and bosses BATE, will Emery continue to let him play or will he shrug his shoulders and continue to use him sparingly. One of the things that annoys me most ia that the players being selected ahead of Ozil aren’t producing but continue to get played while one average performance and he is dropped for several matches.

    Defenders not just tripping over their feet but being over aggressive (not just Muatafi but the whole lot) and giving away needless fouls and penalties.

  73. C says:

    consolsbob,

    Counter-point though my wise old friend, have any of Iwobi, Mhkitaryan, Ramsey or Suarez played so well that they are either undroppable or should be allowed to continue to play until they find form?

  74. C says:

    Here’s the other thing, if the club is teuly trying to force him to leave or sell him thennnnnnnnnnn doing it this way will not brmring about many suitors. We have him so use him even if its as a flat track bully and sub in the 2nd half against the bigger boys.

  75. LSG says:

    C,

    Agree. Next three good opportunities and very necessary to win. Need momentum and confidence ahead of Spurs and other fixtures. I feel we could win at home v MU and really get on track as a result—6 pointer

  76. consolsbob says:

    C,

    No C, they aren’t. However, they are not earning more than most people earn in 20 years in 1 week.

    Plus, they look like they are actually trying.

    Maybe that is not enough but…

  77. consolsbob says:

    To be frank, I couldn’t give two hoots about his ‘brand’ or his plans for the future. Just do his job, while he still has the legs and the talent. It is the only thing that sets him apart from any other 30 year old who manages their life on their abilities.

    Tired of these precious ‘stars’.

  78. LSG says:

    consolsbob,

    Agree with the stars point. Use your talent while you can. It is going to be over soon. Make an effort. I hope he does.

  79. Mattack says:

    LSG,

    I think if there is a problem between coach and player the parties need to sit down and reach an agreement as to what Ozil must do to get back into the team. It is a win win for all concerned if it gets him back and playing well. Unfortunately the egos of those involved may prevent this from happening.

    You’re right that ideally any cause of the problem would be made public to enable us supporters to understand the situation. Unfortunately supporters rarely have the opportunity to make informed decisions in these situations.

  80. LSG says:

    Lichtsteiner has more appearances in all comps this season than Ozil. Ouch!

  81. C says:

    LSG,

    Completely agree and in need of creativity and momentum, time to give it a go and see how he responds.

  82. C says:

    consolsbob,

    Agree about the financial part but you have seen futbol for years and know, sometimes simply trying isn’t good enough.

    We know he has a languid style, he has always played that way, doesn’t mean he doesn’t care.

    Maybe a comination in the team of those who run around and the languid style might be just what we need right now…

  83. Jonnygunner says:

    C:
    consolsbob,

    Agree about the financial part but you have seen futbol for years and know, sometimes simply trying isn’t good enough.

    We know he has a languid style, he has always played that way, doesn’t mean he doesn’t care.

    Maybe a comination in the team of those who run around and the languid style might be just what we need right now…

    My feelings are that Emery has been instructed not to play Mesut…..why is he given the captain’s arm band when he (sometimes)starts,or when the chosen captain is subbed?
    That doesn’t seem logical does it?…..just scraping a bench seat for most of the game and then bang-you’re on….and bye the way,you’re the captain too.
    As LSG pointed out earlier,Emery is the coach,not the manager.He has limited powers.After Wenger’s ‘removal’ it was always going to be this way-no one individual was ever going to have almost complete control again.The fact we are introducing another position….sporting director…….to show that the business-as it now is-is being divided up amongst a collective.
    Shoot me down,but I think Emery has been told not to play Ozil-but when he does make an appearance he’s given the arm band as a nod from Emery as if to say “it’s not my choice that you’re not starting”.
    Too simplified?maybe,but it’s just a hunch.I think Raul is bullying him to leave and Emery’s the fall guy.

  84. Exit the Lemmig says:

    LSG:
    Exit the Lemmig,

    Your comparison of WW2 era fascist dictators waging wars of expansion and a contemporary neoliberal conservative authoritarian in Erdogan is somewhat off.Erdogan is terrible but not really in that class. It was a mistake and hopefully Ozil regrets it, but I think you could make that point without such an exaggerated historical or political comparison.

    I wasn’t comparing their deeds, just the fact that they achieved high enough office to lead their respective countries.

  85. St Totteringham says:

    @LSG : ” But he’s not the manager. And Raul will sacrifice him quickly if he doesn’t succeed by next season”
    Not going to happen as he will be reluctant to fire a coach who is Spanish, and who he selected with 2 others. Also, the Kroenkes do not want CL and top 4 at the cost of buying expensive players to achieve it. We will see Emery for a number of years at Arsenal.

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