The Arsenal manager has spoken out once again to offer an explanation about why Mesut Ozil is not firing on all cylinders and to defend him against what the Frenchman sees as unfair criticism of his number 11, as a report by Arsenal.com reveals.
The Prof clearly feels that Ozil needs a bit of time to get into top form, with the physical and mental hangover from the World Cup finals adventure with Germany still affecting him. And Wenger has called on the Arsenal fans to do their bit by also having patience with the 25-year old midfielder and giving him our full support, which I agree with to a certain extent.
Arsene said, “The fans should not be concerned and just support him. I understand that you always want your best players to make the difference in every single game and we all go through periods where we are a bit less good.
“You help. A club is a union between players, supporters and directors. You have to be united and sometimes go through periods together where it goes a bit less well.
“Why should he be be a scapegoat? We’ve lost one game since April 1. Let’s be realistic. We’ve come out of a very difficult preparation period with decisive games.
“What is difficult to manage today is that everybody knows absolutely everything and everybody judges people definitely on one game. You have to accept that football is played by human beings who have ups and downs like you have in your life.
“[Criticism] is a bit unfair because I believe that our offensive talents on Tuesday night were not in their best condition, and they couldn’t express that talent. On the other hand it’s post-World Cup. He came back on August 11. You know it takes a few months for them to get back to their best, that can happen.
“Many of the World Cup players don’t even play at the moment. I believe that’s natural and I’ve seen that before. I’ve gone through that before and it’s normal – it’s more mental than physical in my opinion.”
It is true that Ozil has become an easy target and that once this happens to a player, the critics start to jump on the media bandwagon like Andre Santos used to jump on a bag of fish and chips. Wenger has a point, but he also admits that the German is not at his best. And it may have escaped his notice, but the Gunners have not got going yet this season and we need some results.
So while it would be nice to be able to keep playing Ozil to get his form and fitness right, can Arsenal really afford to carry any passengers while we keep dropping vital points?