Has Mesut Ozil simply lost his hunger?

When Arsenal made Mesut Ozil there best-paid player ever it was seen as a sign that we could still hang on to World Class players, but it would appear that Unai Emery doesn’t even count him as an automatic name on the teamsheet, and the World Cup winner has only started in half of the Gunners games this season.

The Spaniard left Ozil on the bench for 70 minutes of the massive North London Derby last weekend, and he is now likely to play the full game against Rennes tomorrow, allowing Emery to rest one of his players that are certain to start against Man United at the weekend. The Arsenal legend Lee Dixon thinks that Ozil’s massive contract has made the midfielder soft. Dixon told SunSport: “Signing him up on a big deal was seen as a must, not to lose him.

“But the character of the player has to be taken into consideration.

“When you give somebody that amount of money it probably wouldn’t affect some players. But it looks as if it has softened him.

“He doesn’t look driven, he doesn’t look hungry, and when that happens you have a problem.

“You need Ozil firing as well as the ability of the team to carry him at times when he is not quite functioning.

“There is no doubt that the team needs a player like Ozil playing at his best.

“Even an Ozil not quite at his best, because the creativity that seems to be lacking from that midfield area, from the no.10 area, stands out a mile.”

It is a fact that Ozil has not always looked at his best this season when he has been given a chance to impress, and it is also true that he will still be taking home the cash whether he plays or not, so do you think it could be true that he has simply lost his hunger?

Darren N


  1. gotanidea says:

    It is obvious from his reluctance to do duels and take high risks

    If we compare Ozil with an attacker like Salah, Salah is more daring to do duels and he does not hesitate to make risky movements that could injure him or make him lose the ball

    If we compare Ozil with an attacking midfielder like Iniesta, Iniesta is more willing to dribble forward instead of just taking on the opponents sideways ala Sanchez

  2. Lupe says:

    I just wish all the ozil talk can stop for a while, but i guess when you earn that much as an inconsistent player and at a club like arsenal, people will scrutinise. Some will criticise out of love for the club, while some will out of jealousy. Ozil just needs to put his head down and work to prove his doubters wrong and in the summer, the club will have a big decision to make. I personally think the club and ozil should move on from each other in the summer.

    1. gotanidea says:

      Agree. But as long as Ozil cannot maintain his forms in a highly competitive and extravagant league like EPL, he will always be a media magnet

    2. jon fox says:

      And “some will criticise out of” truth! That truth being that some of us who also love our club and also are not jealous have eyes that work and which show how lacking in drive he is. Or to put it more accurately, he is lazy! I much agree the club and he should move on. The only way that will not happen is if he starts to work hard regularly. And I am as likely to become the Pope as for that to happen. The one who is most cheated by his laziness is actually Mesut himself. He has huge talent but his laziness prevents him using it to its effect.

  3. ken1945 says:

    Has any player been an automatic choice for UE this season?
    Perhaps only Kos since he came back from injury, Sokratis when he hasn’t been injured or suspended and Bellerin before his injury.
    I prefer to listen to our currentplayers when they talk about the desire, commitment and talent of Ozil, rather than ex-players who are now pundits looking for headline seeking quotes.

  4. John0711 says:

    Poor article
    He had a very good game then was dropped how’s that his fault

  5. waal2waal says:

    when ozil came he will have had assurances that we plan to bring in recruitment s and that above all our ambitions to compete at the highest level were practical and real. I’m not sure any of those assurances from ozils viewpoint have been realized. Yes he is handsomely paid but despite this our approach to recruitment of quality were needed during his time has shown to be been amateurish (at times) as has our approach to fielding players in – then out of position.

    Maybe once ramsey heads off to Juve we may see the return to form of ozil – but there’s likely more to the ozil is he hungry, staying or going saga than perhaps we can guess. While he dons an afc shirt (despite occasionally appearing from the dug out) i remain an avid admirer of the quality he offers – i.e. when he’s in the mood.

  6. Sue says:

    I only have one thing to say right now – Come on PSG!!!

    1. Jah son says:

      That’s dun and dusted
      The slip up against Barcelona was to be blamed on you know who

  7. jon fox says:

    I find the large amount of Gooners who continue to deny reality on Ozils lack of drive (or as I prefer to put it “his laziness”) to be the posts of people who put what they (and I) WANT above the reality of what their eyes show them to be true. To deny that Ozil is lacking hunger is to be dishonest with yourself. It is widely thought throughout football by most pundits and professionals who comment on TV . IT IS ALMOST ALWAYS JUST GOONERS WHO DENY THE PLAIN TRUTH. I am never a man who denies what I see or who seeks excuses to misinterpret what I see. Many are!

  8. Pat says:

    Ozil’s topic again ??????????????????????????. The way Man U won tonight though! Am not a Man U fan but I love the dramatic ending Ole is bringing something special out of the squad and he is not fighting with anyone. All hands on deck against Rennes.

  9. waykes says:

    hey all . I say it like this if emery allows ozil to play he’ll just get better and better look how ozil played at Bournemouth and the next week didn’t start at Tottenham. something that would suggest the manager is not backing me if I was a player that would be my thought pattern. so all I’m saying emery should show ozil that he backs him to get the best out of him

  10. Harshit Bihani says:

    I’hv been fan of Ozil ever since his Real Madrid days. But I too feel he has lost his hunger either to play for Arsenal or Football as a whole. As you’ve seen in the past his attitude and anger whenever he was benched or substituted but nowadays I get the feeling that he doesn’t care. There is not a single sign of unhappiness in his face because of lack in game time otherwise players of his quality & ability will come crying out in dugout kicking things around if benched in big games or get substituted. Maybe he is earning more even for his own good. But still it’s just an assumption as you can never know what goes behind the scenes.

  11. Goonster says:

    With Ozil its like Trump. He has his very loyal fanbase, social media (twitter etc). All he has to do are PR stunts on his social media when the heat gets too high on his performances on the pitch. Him and his PR team just throw in some sweet and tender red meat here and there to keep the loyal fanbase sweet.

    I hope his consistency was on the pitch rather on his social media. Put more effort on the pitch like you do on social media.

  12. Clam says:

    Oh come on. He played well and got benched the next game. Now you are bitching about how he’s not angry with being benched. Maybe that’s what we called being professional and try not to mess with the coach’s decision (or would you prefer a kepa in your team). Frankly speaking, we have lost our beautiful style since UE was on board.

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