Tactical Reasons Doesn’t Wash Anymore by Dan Smith
Unai Emery is doing himself no favours by insisting it is tactical reasons why Ozil continues to not make the Arsenal matchday squad. If he really believes the German is not good enough to even make our bench then we have the right to question his decision. He is better off telling us what has happened behind the scenes. If the German is sulking, being disruptive or refusing to.train, tell us and no Gooner would tolerate it. By being adamant though that it is strictly his choice, he puts massive pressure on himself. We have to trust he’s telling the truth, which means he generally thinks that Iwobi is a better option.
When he was going 22 games unbeaten, he could stick out his chest and take praise for not being afraid to drop our highest earner. When you’re no longer winning fixtures however you can’t keep hiding behind tactical reasons, losing means your tactics have not been working. We all have spoken about Ozil’s lack of consistency, his body language, his lack of work rate, etc but why is no one else not being made an example out of? It’s like the Spaniard wants to make an example out of the midfielder because he earns 350,000 pound a week. It’s not Ozil’s fault the board offered him that amount is it?
We know he is being let down by our transfer policy, but his job is to work with the tools he has got. Shouldn’t he be coaching to eliminate individuals’ flaws, not just giving up on the player? Long term our boss might have inherited those who don’t fit into his system but unless he can convince Mr Kroenke to release funds, he has to tolerate those who might not represent his philosophy. It’s not about thinking of whether Ozil is good enough, more a case of is the replacement any better. If Emery truly thinks Iwobi is a better alternative, then I question his reading of the game. How many managers would prefer the Nigerian to the World Cup winner? While we discuss his flaws it’s worth pointing out since arriving in England the playmaker has more assists then any player in the whole of Europe. Even in his limited appearances this season Ozil’s statistics are much better than Iwobi. In the next month, we face the likes of Chelsea, United and City with confidence at the Emirates at an all-time low.
In the final third, out of the two, who would you trust to create the killer pass or score a goal? Ozil or Iwobi? Many more performances like at the weekend and Emery can’t shrug his shoulders and keep saying it’s tactical reasons. At the moment his tactics are simply not working.