Is former Gunner right to slam current Arsenal star?

I do not mind the former Arsenal and Germany keeper Jens Lehmann having his say on the club by any means. The 45-year old did play 200 games for Arsenal and was a part of that historic invincibles season when we last lifted the Premier League trophy.

I just wonder whether he is right to have a go at his fellow countryman Mesut Ozil and suggest that our attacking midfielder has still got a lot to prove to the Arsenal fans and the football world in general, especially in the bigger and more important games.

As reported by The Mirror, Lehmann did say some good things about Ozil, calling him a fantastic player, but he went on to say that the former Real Madrid man too often tends to go missing when we really need him and suggests that it is a mental issue with Ozil.

Lehmann said, “Everyone knows he can be a fantastic player. But you need to be a fantastic player in the big games. You don’t need to be a fantastic player in the small games and mediocre player in the big games.

“He can definitely do that but now he must prove it. You need to know how to think and how to programme yourself.

“Of course he can improve. You can’t get better on the day that you retire from football – but you can every day before that.”

I’m not sure Jens, because Ozil was really looking back to his best in the second half of the season, having used his time on the sidelines due to a knee injury to get in the gym and improve his strength in order to cope better with the rigours of the English game.

Ozil has enough critics in the media from the likes of Michael Owen and Paul Scholes, without players connected to Arsenal getting on his back as well. I think Lehmann may be suffering from the old case of not really getting how much Ozil gives to the team because of the way he seems languid on the pitch.

I have just looked back at my player ratings towards the end of last season and I gave the Man of the Match award to Ozil in the FA cup semi/final and the BPL games against Chelsea and Liverpool and they were certainly big games, so was Lehmann wrong to accuse the German of not performing in the big games?

Tags Lehmann Ozil


  1. I hear what lehmann is saying but mesut performance last season is done and dusted now! What im looking forward to is him excelling for us in the 2015/16 season and giving us a chance of making a fight for the bpl title! Coyg!

  2. Ozil will be involve with pre season for the first time since He came to Arsenal……I strongly believe He will be outstanding this coming season. Hope He stays fit and avoid lengthy period out due to injury.

    Ozil has got a quiet personality but I think He listens to critics and tries His best….For example, He was criticised before his injury last season. We all felt He needed to bulk up abit. That he did during his time out….

    In this modern times, with such price tag, People will definitely expect more from Him…Having said that, The whole players needs to up their games this coming season if we really want to win the league……

  3. I feel he is very good when other teams play open style of football, because he feel much more comfortable and free to express himself, to say the least it suits him……..I might be wrong but when it comes to more of a physical game and also other teams are just defending, he just doesn’t look good, because (I feel) he doesn’t like that style of play, he wants a clean and beautiful game.

  4. I have a “faible” for Mad Jens.
    I loved his attitude when n the pitch, I am sure he would have gotten us that final v Barcelona (the ref that gave him the red card said years later that he might had that call wrong because of the circumstances).
    So …whatever he says I follow

  5. I put little stock in anything former gunners have to say. They have their agenda while I trust my opinion and the opinions of other gooners far more.

  6. if we want to win…we have to strengthen the team…quality players comes with a price

  7. I think the issue is that Ozil needs to be more confident in his shooting and take more shots. He is involved in big games and I think he plays well, but he has never been the focal point, does a very large portion of his work off the ball, and is just not the type to ask for the ball and run at defenders.

    Varying his game and taking on players more, taking more shots, and making more runs into the box to try to score will help his game and the team IMO. Ozil DOES have plenty to work on, but how many players don’t?

  8. Ozil is great against mid table or lower sides, but goes missing all too easily when we play bigger teams. Or perhaps that’s unfair. Perhaps it’s fairer to say he goes missing when we aren’t on the front foot. He isn’t a player that will change a game or get their team back into a game. That player for us is Alexis Sanchez. Ozil is the type of player that can give you that little bit extra when you are on top. Or, in the big games, is someone to feed the ball into the player that can make things happen – Alexis. In Özil’s case, it used to be Ronaldo.

    For me, rather than looking for more from Özil, I think we need another Alexis Sanchez type. Someone you can hope will turn a game. Man City have Yaya Toure and Sergio Aguero to do it. Chelsea have Hazard and Costa. We need that extra somebody. Giroud isn’t that type of player. Can that somebody be Aaron Ramsey? He scores important goals every now and then, has boundless energy and a willingness to get forward. Could it be Theo Walcott? He’s changed big games before, even Messi praised him for it. Or does it have to be someone new…?

    1. That player you are asking for should be bought initially with the 42m we wasted it to bench our best player two season ago (Cazorla)
      Anyway, I agree we need someone who can change games and I would be more than happy to sign: Reus, Gotze, or Cavani even Sterling, Kane, or Benteke, they might mot be at Sanchez class but definitely an improvement

  9. Just think that the second half of Ozil’s first season with us seems to have put up a very strong impression in lots of minds that he doesn’t put in enough effort. I don’t think putting in enough effort was ever a problem with him, he just needed time to adjust mentally and physically to the brand of football played in the EPL. I think Ozil is now fully adjusted to life as an Arsenal player and we will certainly see him pick up from where he left and show us his best in an Arsenal jersey this season.

    I hope we add a bit more quality in attack so that more out of the plethora of chances he creates are put away. He is a fantastic and incredibly unselfish player who would walk into the starting 11 of most football teams in the world.

  10. Why are you being so sensitive about what Lehmann said about Ozil. It wasn’t malice, he didn’t have an agenda, he balanced the criticism with praise. The two are probably mates. Ozil probably agrees with him. Ozil does have room for improvement. Both Sanchez and Cazorla finished the season higher rated than Ozil. I put a lot of this down to him not having attackers to finish off his assists, Walcott has been missing for 90% of Ozil’s time at the club and Welbeck was standing in for Giroud for much of the first half of last season.

    It’s true Ozil needs to be counted in the big games and he needs to be shooting at goal more. At the moment, Ozil puts in the same shift against Monaco as he does against Everton … plus swaps his shirt at half time.

  11. People label us as Ozil haters/bashers.. Maybe some of us expect so much more from him compared to others..

    But sometimes you have got to take a sit back and ask why so many people criticise Ozil, it just can’t be because of hate, there must be a reason why. Gilberto, Henry, Keown, Wrighty, Dixon, Lehmann, Parlour, Pundits, his fellow countrymen etc have all highlighted the same points about Ozil, it surely cant be because they are all jealous or hate him. There is something there for sure..

  12. You are right, everyone has an opinion – you choose the ones that suit your perspective. You can listen to ex-player with their rent-a-quotes or you can hear what those who work and play with him say.

    1) Joachim Low, who should know a thing or two, being the Germany manager.
    ‘For me, it’s incomprehensible that Real would sell him…….’
    2) Real captain Sergio Ramos tells it straight.
    ‘If it was up to me, he would be one of the last players to go. He’s a unique player and it’s a shame.’
    3) Real full-back Alvaro Arbeloa can’t take the news seriously.
    ‘He said goodbye on Sunday, but I thought he was joking!’
    4) Real fans made their feelings known – at the ceremony to celebrate Gareth Bale’s arrival.
    ‘Ozil no se vende’ (‘Ozil is not for sale!’).
    5) Cesc Fabregas was glad to see the back of one of Barcelona’s biggest rivals.
    ‘I was really surprised by Ozil’s departure. He seemed to me the second-best player at Madrid.’
    6) Jose Mourinho was the manager when Ozil arrived in Madrid – he still rates him.
    ‘Ozil is unique. There is no copy of him – not even a bad one.’
    7) Sami Khedira played alongside his compatriot for club and country – he’s going to miss him.
    ‘Personally, I regret that he leaves. It’s a loss because I think that Mesut can make the difference.’
    8) Isco only arrived in Madrid this summer and could take Ozil’s place in the team. But he doesn’t sound happy about it.
    ‘It has surprised me, and more so after he said last week he was going to stay. He has a lot of quality and he’s a player who is capable of changing a game.’
    9) Germany forward Thomas Muller knows what he’d have done.
    ‘Madrid pushed the boat out this summer, with a new coach, and new stars, but I would not have sold to Ozil.’
    10) Perhaps the one that matters – Cristiano Ronaldo. He, after all, benefited most from Ozil’s assists.
    ‘The sale of Ozil is bad news for me. He is the player who knows best my movements in front of goal. I am very unhappy about the sale.’
    11) Gullit: “Ozil as a footballer is technically perfect”.

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