You will not have to look very hard to find a football pundit willing to criticise the Arsenal and Germany international star Mesut Ozil. The creative midfielder has been getting plenty of stick ever since he signed for the Gunners from Real Madrid back in 2013, with the usual lines trotted out being about his lack of effort, his unwillingness to get stuck in or his going missing in big games or away games.
Just a few weeks ago we had Steven Gerrard jumping on the bandwagon after Arsenal lost at Stoke, despite the fact that we were robbed by the referee and it was an error by Granit Xhaka and the defence that gave the Potters the points.
In the build up to our next Premier League game, away to Chelsea, I saw a report by Metro suggesting that for the Gunners to have any chance of getting a result at Stamford Bridge we need to see Arsene Wenger drop Ozil from the starting line-up. Funnily enough the other two things the report says Arsenal should do is return to a back four and go out with the tactics of defending deep and playing on the counter.
I must say that a counter attacking style for Arsenal is much more likely if you have a player who can pick the right pass to release a striker like Alexis Sanchez and no Arsenal player has the same vision ior ability on the ball as our German.
I would also point to a report in the Daily Mail that once again ruins that easy criticism of Ozil not trying or not trying in away games. Not only cover more ground for Arsenal last season than anyone bar Monreal, Ozil has covered exactly the same ground at home and away so far this season.
So what is left? The big game question perhaps, with the Mail pointing out his return of just five goals in 31 games against the EPL’s top five. However, if you look at his overall Arsenal record of 23 goals in 119 EPL games this is consistent, and you could even say it should be worse against the bigger clubs so maybe he raises his game in important matches.
His record in recent games against Chelsea is actually pretty good as well, so why on earth would Wenger drop one of Arsenal’s best players for this big game, just because of some mistaken ideas about Ozil coming from the so-called football experts?