Mesut Ozil easily won the Arsenal Player-of-the-Year award this season, but I am sure we can all remember the German’s first season at the Emirates, when many fans thought that Ozil was a bit lazy and used to go missing in action during many games.
Well, despite Ozil winning the German Player-of-the-Year 4 times in the last 5 years, his countryman Dieter Hamann thinks that the German supporters also underestimate the amount of work that our superstar does on the pitch, although he personally believes that Ozil has improved at the Emirates.
“Ozil has been growing at Arsenal but the problem with him was always consistency,” said Hamann.
“You wouldn’t say he only did it in flashes because it might have been six weeks where he was doing well, but this season he’s been doing it for three, four or five months in a row.
“He’s maybe a bit underrated for the German side, even though he has always had a big role to play.
“I think perhaps he’s also a bit undervalued in Germany, but he will be one of the key players at Euro 2016 because he can make things happen that nobody else can.”
Although Hamann expects Ozil to be one of the stars, he is a little worried about whether Germany can add to their World Cup Winners trophy this summer. “They will be up there with the favourites and rightly so because they are the reigning world champions,” he said.
“They lost a few players after the World Cup, but they will be there or thereabouts.
“They haven’t been playing that well, but the closer it gets to the tournament the more focused they will be.”
“They will expect to get out of the group but at the same time you can’t take anything for granted,” Hamann added.
“Poland beat them in Poland in the qualifiers, but it’s a group they definitely would have taken beforehand.
“You totally expect them to get to the last 16 and then you just need to see who they get in the knock-out games.”
Considering he is German, Hamann would be expected to talk up his country’s chances of going all the way this time around. Have they really deteriorated since the World Cup? Or will they come back to their very best in the Euros?