His games for Arsenal against Liverpool have not always been happy occasions, as Mesut Ozil was subbed off by Arsene Wenger after 60 minutes of that horrendous 5-1 drubbing at Anfield in his debut season, but on the whole our club record signing has good reason to look froward to the visit of Brendan Rodgers and his scousers on Monday.
The first time the German international play maker face them was a brilliant 2-0 win at the Emirates and the Gunners also beat them on the way to lifting the FA cup trophy that season. And the last clash between the two Premier League rivals was illuminated by a fantastic free kick goal from Ozil.
So it is hardly surprising to read his words on Arsenal.com about how fondly he remembers that day and how much he is looking forward to getting at them again on Monday evening.
Our number 11 said, “During the warm-up I kept focusing on that corner and took five shots after the other. The practise went well and that’s why I thought during the game that it had gone well in the warm-up so I would surprise the goalkeeper. That’s how I scored the goal, and I was really pleased with it.
“It was a nice feeling. When you assist goals or score them yourself, it does you good but what’s most important is that we have success as a team and that was the case against Liverpool last season.
“We were really convincing, the whole team was very focused and played really well.
“I remember that we delivered a really convincing display. In the first half we decided the game because we had a high level of concentration and wanted to utilise our potential.
“We want to do that again this time. We’re at home and we know exactly how we can beat Liverpool. That’s what we want to do on Monday.”
I am a big fan of Ozil and his abilities but I can see what people mean when they say he can go missing at times. You feel that sometimes he needs to be in the mood and so his comments ahead of the game are very encouraging. And if he needed any more incentive to put on a show then Wenger has given it to him, as reported by Sky Sports. Some of the recent Arsenal transfer rumours have linked Ozil with a transfer to the Turkish club Besiktas but Wenger made it clear that he was a key part of the Gunners team and also reassured fans that the player did not want to leave.
The boss said, “He is completely committed to the club. He is focused on getting results.”
So as well as having a good feeling going in to the match, Ozil will maybe want to lay down a marker as well. Add to that the likelihood that Jordan Henderson looks like missing the game and giving Ozil more time and space in midfield. Now if he just practices his free kicks well in the warm up, who knows…?