Mesut Ozil on shirt-swap and staying at Arsenal

The German playmaker Mesut Ozil has definitely come back to his best form after bulking himself up during his enforced absence through injury, and has made it clear that he is not considering leaving Arsenal in the near future. “A return to Germany is not an option for me right now.” he said in the Independent. “I am really happy at Arsenal and I want this to continue.”

“I played in the Bundesliga and at Real Madrid. But the English Premier League is the strongest league in the world. Opponents never give up. Even if we’re 3-0 in front with Arsenal, the players never give up and fight until the very last second.”

So it looks like we will still have Ozil and Alexis feeding Jackson Martinez next season 🙂 With that dream attacking line-up we are sure to win the Quadruple!

Meanwhile, many fans have complained about Ozil swapping shirts with Kondogbia at half-time in Monaco. The sublime midfielder is completely bemused by the inflated attention given to his actions. “Geoffrey Kondogbia asked me for my shirt and I wanted to do him a favour.” he said.

“Maybe I should have given him the shirt in the tunnel. But seriously guys, is there nothing more important to discuss for a knockout game than a shirt swap?”

He certainly has a point, but I do remember Andre Santos getting seriously vilified for once doing the same thing once against Man United. I guess the fact that Brazilian dfender was totally rubbish, and his biggest mistake was swapping with our hated traitor Robin van Purse-strings. I certainly can’t see Arsenal fans treating Ozil with the same disdain, especially as he may have swapped with a future Arsenal player lol!

Tags Kondogbia Ozil santos


  1. OK, so someone ask you shirt. That’s a sign of respect. I am glad Ozil gave his t shirt to Kongdobia, great character. I think Scholes is just jealous no one asked for his shirt. Not even his wife.

    1. The whole Ozil enigma was encapsulated within 2 minutes of the end of the Monaco game.

      Paul Scholes: “Ozil was poor…….”
      Charlie Nicholas: Ozil was “absolutely magnificent”.

      Regarding the shirt “swap” – I don’t give a monkeys but I am sure as hell that Ozil didn’t ask for Kondogbia’s shirt. Sure Ozil could have told him to f**k off and die but then I guess we would have had a different headline.

      Also had a thought on Ozil whilst I was watching the Barca game last night. Must have watched Barca 40 or 50 times in the past 4 or 5 years and it struck me how easy it is to overlook, underestimate what Iniesta and Xavi (although not playing atm, in particular) bring to their team. I know people have their eyes on the Barca megastar strikers but Xavi is generally almost invisible to any causal match observer – no 40 yard dribbles, no outrageous skills, no 25 yard screamers – pass, pass, pass, re-cycle, pass, pass, pass ad nauseum. He is however the glue, the tempo man, the re-cycle king – the oil in the machine. I think most coaches and clued-in fans rate the guy. Perhaps you can get away with this in a massively successful team and perhaps why maybe Ozil who performs in a similar understated way, becomes the brunt of criticism in a team that frustrates or flatters to deceive.

      There aren’t many reliable objective facts when it comes to Ozil – but knock out the emotional stuff and the diversionary fluff about body language etc and the bare numbers tell us he isn’t lazy, he touches the ball more than any other Arsenal player, re-cycles and passes it better than any, is surer in possession and creates more chances. There are no serious discussions to be had to suggest the above is not true – even from the most die-hard detractors – surely??

      The problem and the continuous negative press is rooted in something more subjective in my opinion. The £42M price tag doesn’t help but that is an irrelevance – it was not a price he demanded. I can guarantee you that if a British player costing say £25M was doing EXACTLY the same job at say Liverpool then he would be a media darling – bit harder for a £42M German muslim of Turkish descent.

      1. So why was Ozil able to capture everyone’s hearts in his early years at RM and Germany??? But once he lived past half a season at Arsenal criticism starting pouring in left, right, centre?? Surely it can’t be down to the price tag alone???

        1. I haven’t got the answer tubby – all I know is that it doesn’t quite stack up for me. Every media piece on Ozil is formulaic and preceded with the “£42M” tag. Even if everyone agreed that Ozil has been ineffective and underwhelming why so many column inches when you have at least a dozen other exorbitantly expensive PL players who have been way, way less convincing. Mata, Di Maria, Lamela, Mangala, Shaw, Lovren, Carrol, Soldado, Fernandinho, Lallana, Jovetic for starters. And whether we accept it or not it does invariably colour the opinions of the fans of a club who are constantly ridiculed.

          1. @vijay

            We know people hate arsenal the point he is also trying to make that it’s our own damn fans who constantly slate and criticize ozil even when he is performing

  2. Panic buy to please the fans,,, He willl never justify his price tag, sell him while he can earn us some money,,, cazorla is far better amf

  3. It’s a shame it wasn’t a permanent swap I’d take kondogbia over ozil all day , I’ve stuck up for him all along but am sick of it now he just isn’t suited to the English game he needs space to work and u don’t get that in the epl

  4. OT : Have everyone here made peace with the fact that OG will be our 1st choice striker for next season as well ? No disrespect to Giroud. He is decent form, he works his arse off and contribute in other departments as well. But Giroud as a 1st choice striker, we can finish 2nd/3rd in PL, win FA cup and get to Quarter finals in UCL at the most which by current standards and ambition of our club sounds ffantastic(LOL). But if we are aiming for PL/UCL glory anytime soon, we need to have a 30 goal a season striker. Period. Wenger has just adopted to mediocrity and a lot of fans seem to be doing the same thing.

    1. Ok.. So Giroud this season…
      20 apps 14 goals 3 assists
      This magical 30 number people speak of is just ridiculous. And the very few strikers who do score 30 goals a season usually play in systems focused a lot more heavily on them.
      Giroud’s ability to bring others into play, movement and ability to create space for himself or others in the box is World-class.
      No he will never be that threat in behind and no, he will never be the player who can dance through 3-4 defenders. His skillset is limited but his strengths are exceptional.

      Scoring goals has never been our downfall this season. Though letting in soft goals has been… Food for thought

      1. Top comment @josh.

        I must confess that even though I really, really fancied Giroud from his day one at Arsenal, I -at most times during last season- began to despise his presence in the team. It was beyond frustration for me as I saw him miss chance after chance. However, I now know better that it wasn’t a 100% his fault that things turned out as they did last season. In fact, he was willing to help to rescue the situation though it was clearly beyond his power. The little he had was drained from him to the point he could no longer fight for 50-50 balls.

        He’s got his talents and gifts. When he fights, they show clearly for the whole world to see. Though there are still questions about his consistency levels, I would take this season’s Giroud any time any day. Give me this Giroud and this Welbeck and I shall say…meh. Give this Giroud and another of this Giroud, and I will fancy my chance in the fight for football’s biggest titles.

        1. Well said as well. Even last season he started well but fatigue plays a bit part. With no other options up front it was clear he was lacking form, confidence and energy which drastically affected his performances/output.
          I seriously believe with the abundance of quality we have in midfield and on the wings he’s a great striker for us who’s still on the way up. You can tell he’s the kind of player who’s always looking to improve.

          Welbeck’s an interesting one.. Though based on how hungry Akpom has looked every time he’s stepped on the pitch he’ll need to get a move on with his development. Physical and pacey but in dire need of some fine tuning. Jury’s still out for me personally

  5. I totally wouldn’t mind Kondogbia, despite Monaco being very bad in the second tie it seemed like he had no problem holding his own in that midfield AGAIN. The dude is loaded on talent and phyiscal power and yet I feel like he’s wasting his time in the Ligue 1. May we miss out on Schneiderlin I think Kondogbia is an absolute must for that position.

  6. Lol exactly. When Andre Santos swapped shirts at half time, all the fans bashed him like no tomorrow. When Ozil does the same thing, everyone start jumping to his defence. So when you’re a bigger name u get full immunity from everything? Talk about double standards.

    By the way if you think Ozil is back to his best recently, surely you haven’t watch him play before Arsenal. He used to do much more than he’s currently showing.

    1. I just do not have any idea how i am supposed to reply to your post!
      Do you hate Ozil? Like seriously?

      1. No I don’t hate Ozil. I hate the way he gets preferential treatment from the fans over some of other players (Wilshere, Szczesny etc). Some fans here treat Ozil like the second coming; its as though he’s the first world class player to ever to grace the Arsenal shirt. I also hate the way many ppl overrate his abilities to delusional levels.

        I am an Arsenal fan but I have no problems admitting Hazard is one of best players this season. I also hear many plaudits, from fans of other clubs no less, going Alexis’s way this season. But when only Arsenal fans seem to think Ozil is performing at a world class level, you know there’s a hell lot of bias going on. And honestly you think he’s doing better for us now than he previously did for RM and his earlier years for Germany??? Like it or not, everyone can see he has regressed

        1. i agree about ozil.

          watch him at bremen an early madrid years.
          not the same player

          hes played well since he got back, but world class- yeah right.

            1. Said it before, will say it again – Some of the personal biases on here are amazing, but I guess it’s those differences that make the world go round.
              Example, Mesut and Santi were at the heart of every productive attack we had Tuesday night. Their ability to wriggle out of tight areas and make their individual defenders miss absolutely keeps attacks ticking over for us . Aside from maybe one or two dribbles, the only time Mesut lost the ball was when he tried to force a penetrating pass to create a scoring opportunity (which he gets paid to do). You bias folks that struggle to properly evaluate a game then come on here and say that he was a liability and needed to come off the field. Horrible observation. We’ve won 9 of 10 games since he’s returned and has been performing well. Jack and Aaron, who can’t pick half the passes that Mesut can, needlessly give the ball away on the regular – as Ramsey did several times yesterday – and no one says anything about that because they look like they run so hard (read: are British). If Ramsey or Jack took the touches and played the passes that Mesut does you would all be on here talking about how they are the future of football in England. Don’t believe me? Think back to the reaction after Jack’s good game against Barca…

              To further prove my point, Ramsey, who has been an absolute shell of the player he was last season and more inline with the player he was seasons prior to that, has scored two goals in two games, and all of the sudden you want to say that “he’s back in form”. Are you kidding? He’s not done anything spectacular, just 2 of his shots have gone in the goal. Many times Tuesday he doddled on the ball when there were other quicker options, and even just ran one out of bounds, and no one says a word. He’s just viewed as “back to his best” because he scored.
              Meanwhile, Giroud keeps on scoring goals, and is still told he’s shyte. I don’t believe that Giroud is the man to lead the line for us and ultimately take us to glory, but why is it that his goals make him average, while Ramsey’s goals make him world class? Because Giroud is a forward and constantly in the box getting chances and Ramsey’s a midfielder you say? Tell that to Ramsey who 85% of the time is ahead of our ACM and constantly in the box looking to score with the rest of the front line.

              Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but these biases are unreal sometimes.

              1. Wait there are actually Arsenal fans bias towards Ramsey/Wilshere?? Haven’t came across one in ages. Anyway, your assessment of Ozil is merely an opinion, just as much as mine. But interestingly only Arsenal fans seems to agree with your assessment. Other fans and neutrals appear to all take alternative views.

                1. Yeah that’s not true “other fans and neutrals….”. It would appear that you’re only choosing to hear and read articles that support your opinion. While several pundits are vocal about the lack of English Characteristics he displays, there are other well renowned coaches and players that refer to him as one of the best 10s in the world. What’s also important is that belief is clearly shared by Arsene who continues to choose Mesut to orchestrate our attacks.

                2. What?? Didn’t you see ozil was always critism by pundit a lot??? Didn’t you hear, if ozil there and we lose, whose gonna blame first??? Yeah our 42,5 record signing. So you think ozil still had a joy moment in here?? I’d tell you, in madrid, madridistas love him and he needed that. In here he didn’t get enough respect from a arsenal fans. Just as reminder, ozil game in madrid if you watch, he never ever dictating a game, he can dissapear all game, but why mou keep him? Becaus if ozil there, there is an opportunity that he had a one moment to kill the game.

              2. @TH14.. You seem to be forgetting the stick Ramsey was getting from us since 2012 season. He was being booed for his poor performances and the guy had just got back from a broken leg injury which saw him out for more a year. Ozil has not even reached this level of criticism.

                Wilshere was doing well in the Cesc, Nasri Era, and his injuries have stopped him from progressing. He spends the majority of each season out injured. But everyone has criticized him which he deserves, he has not progressed. If a player is not performing we he should get the stick. But when it comes to Ozil different criteria is used. smh

                Giroud has been the biggest scapegoat given as the main reason Ozil has been poor since signing for us. The poor guy keeps getting booed since since last season, he is a £10 million player on £60,000 a week but people would rather blame these sort of players than our Rolls Royce of a player.

                Cazorla, Arteta, The Ox, Flamini, Mertesacker, Monreal, Walcott, Ramsey, Wilshere, Rosicky , Sanogo etc, there has not been a single player that has not been blamed on behalf of prince Ozil. These sort of £0-£16 million players ain’t got a chance if they have a few bad games. Ozil will have 4 seasons playing this mediocre way and still would not have as much criticism as the likes.

                Double standards..

                1. @Goonster U’ve nailed my point mate. Just bcos I’m critical of Ozil’s contributions doesn’t imply I hate the man. What I do hate though, is the way Gooners shower him with the kind of love other players can only dream of receiving. And its not even down to his performances, but merely on the fact that he was our only world class signing in ages.

                  And since the site wont let me reply to the previous two post, I’ll just post my thoughts here.

                  @TH14atl. U seem to have a disdain for English style of football which I can’t comprehend. Is there anything wrong with working hard on the pitch? Back to the point, I agree there will be coaches who agree Mesut is performing world class, but u can’t deny the fact that MAJORITY of the people don’t think Ozil is as good as we gooners claim. When you are really THAT good, there is no reason for the majority of the football community to criticise your performances.

                  @Randy87. Yes I agree Ozil has never been a player to dictate a game. You will have to ask yourself whether that one moment of brilliance is sufficient to justify him disappearing for the rest of the game. And what happens if that moment of brilliance never came, like vs Monaco??? This is why Ozil looks especially bad when we lose, because he’s practically invisible when misfiring. Some people may think Ozil’s ability to kill the game in one instant is enough, and I respect that. But being the ‘world class’ player that gooners here think he is, I think he’s got to show a lot more to justify that tag

                2. @Tubby, I’ve no disdain against the English style of football, I just get frustrated with the lack of acceptance that simply “working hard” on the pitch means you’re a quality footballer. I’m certain you would agree that that characteristic (which were your words not mine) isn’t getting the English National team very far at the moment. Have they not invested millions of dollars to make their players more technical and increase their understanding of moving off the ball, etc.?

                  I feel you have to have a strong technical ability, with a work-rate to match. But simply working hard is not going to make us successful. Mesut clearly has technical ability in abundance, but his languid style makes him look (to the untrained eye) as if he’s not working hard. That’s what annoys me.

                  I’ve got no beef with Rambo, I’m actually hopeful that he can work back towards last year’s form. But this year he hasn’t shown that, and thus should not be inserted right back into the team and disrupt the rhythm. Rotated, yes, but immediate 11, no. Jack I think should be sold. What benefit does he currently bring us. (I loved Theo, but now I feel that we have too many quality footballers and it’s tough for Theo to fit into the side. Alexis, Welbz, AOC, Wellington Silva, Theo, Campbell, Podolski, Gnabry – people will have to go. If Theo can’t find a way to fit in, then unfortunately he may be on the block).

                  Bottom line, every time we lose it’s Mesut’s fault, and that’s just Naive. it becomes frustrating when other players contribute absolute nothing, people then tout as world class.

                3. Goonster: Bottom line everyone has their favourites but it is simply not true to say that Ozil escapes criticism – only Mertesacker has attracted more bile and abuse on this site. You are a regular here – you must see the flak he gets – surely? It is not universal condemnation though – the issue appears to be that those who don’t rate him have a problem with those that stick up for him. Strange all round.

                4. @tubby you wrong again, in monaco he had a moment (pass to monreal), so why are you still didn’t satisfy??? Because it’s ozil so you never satisfy. Just check the reality mate, isn’t with ozil (and the team of course) we finnaly get a throphy (9 years mate!!!), isn’t right now we came to back in form (3rd in prem). Ozil always and always get critism by pundit and by arsenal fans (i dont get it if you didnt see it) how many times fans chant him like cazorla or giroud or shancez can show it to you. But still for you he always untouchable to critism (thats your point of view). For me he got unfair critism again and again. Even he particularly good vs monaco, you critism him because he didn’t spectacular for “42,5 mil” player.

    2. erghhh.. i sincerely doubt you’re basing that on much more than his highlight videos.
      but even so, this whole comparison thing has to stop. just treat him as an Arsenal player, one who’s actually playing well this season.
      He’s in the team to create chances, exactly what he’s doing. If we wanted a player to score a tonne of goals, crunch players in tackles or possess an insane work-rate we probably would’ve went for someone else…

    3. There’s a pretty big difference between swapping shirts with a player in a Champions League tie and swapping shirts with a former captain of your side, especially when they’ve just transferred to a rival in quite controversial circumstances.

      Andre Santos is also one of the worst players I’ve seen wearing an Arsenal shirt in the last 15 years, while Ozil is one of the most talented. Hardly comparable.

    4. There is one difference. Ozil was asked for the t shirt. Get it in that thick head of yours. RvP was asked for the same. Do you understand this or should I draw it on a paper for you?

      1. exactly! how can anyother saw that…ozil was asked for his shirt and he agreed to swap it…andre santos, after a terrible match from the team and from the same santos, vs our old enemy, he runs like a fan to vanpuss*s arms (our traitor) and beg for his shirt…the first is a favor, an act of gentleman that maybe was wrong in the form (he could swaped shirts in the tunnel)…the second its a completly lack of respect for the club and lack of selfsteem from andre santos.

        1. Personal attacks? Where? I was just offering some of my time to draw on a paper the whole issue. No words, just drawings. I sense by the tone of your message that you don’t really fancy the idea. It’s my loss.

          1. No I will actually be pleased if you took the time to draw it for me. But unfortunately with that ‘thick head’ of mine, I probably can’t comprehend your drawings anyway

  7. Wenger on Mertesacker’s comments that Arsenal are far from winning CL: “We’re out because of a dreadful defensive performance in 1st leg.”

    Wenger confirms Rosický set to return to #AFCsquad to play Newcastle. Arteta & Debuchy to return beginning of April.

    Wenger on if Arsenal need new players: “The transfer window is closed. 95% of the squad will still be here next year.” #afc

  8. 5% is like about 2 players (never good at math), so Flamini and Diaby most probably will get the chop.

  9. The double standards here.. It’s all about how you are loved or your reputation at a club..

    If you are a cheap £10 – £16 million player who is not perceived to be a star the don’t try swapping shirts at half time while you are losing. Andre Santos did it and got slaughtered..

    Balotelli did it this season for Liverpool and because he is the scapegoat and the reason Liverpool all the other Liverpool players were poor, he got mashed for swapping shirts..


  10. I don’t know if Arsena FC have a club policy on shirt swapping. If they do not have, I think it is better they put one in place which should be imbedded into their players contract deals at the point of signing the deals. I think there has been the traditional way of swapping shirt, which is usually done after full time. For Ozil to have swapped his shirt with Kondogbia before full time whistle is an act of game treason against Arsenal by Ozil. Ozil had the choice to turn down or delay Kondogbia’s subtle request. Why can’t Kondogbia wait till full time before making his request. I think Kondogbia made his untimely request to kindle the wrath of Arsenal Gooners on ozil. And Ozil cheaply fell for the plot for a publicity staunch in the press as he his performance has been averaged on the field of play for Arsenal. Why didn’t Ozil score a sublime goal as Stade Louis II on Wednesday night and qualify Arsenal for a UCL Q/final game? What was good for Andre Santos should be good for Ozil I suppose. We are all living witnesses Brendan Rodgers hammering Liverpool player, Mario Balotelli’s swapping shirt with Pepe of Real Madrid on their way to the tunnel at half time. To serve as a deterrent to other would be untimely shirt wrappers, Ozil should be fined a week wage.

    1. Yes, because this will make us champions. (THERE YOU GO AGAIN – STOP INSULTING PEOPLE OR YOU WILL BE BANNED-Admin)

      1. Actually you can’t ban me. I have more fake ip’s than you have hair. But that would be a waste of my time. Don’t get too cocky, I don’t really miss your sorry blog. I enter here just to have some fun. Having a blast fscking with some people here.

    2. @samuel@justarsenal
      You saw all of that in a simple shirt swap request? It’s got all the makings of a “made for t.v.” drama…

  11. believe it..apart from football view, ozil is a big name..coaches themselves ask for ozils shirt.morinho included…so nothing wrong with giving to it an opponent who shows respect and requests for it at the very ozil

  12. when would we stop judging a player by his demeanor and base our judgement by his abilities and What that player actually does offer! Giroud and Ozil have gotten lots of sticks for this, I begin to ask myself What’s d point of soccer…..dis isn’t Hollywood or something! How unintelligent have most of us become! most pundits should be jobless if u ask me! fans back ur. team or piss off!

  13. only Ozil would give his shirt out twice in one match! this guy just oozes class! so lucky we have such an embodiment of technique with class………!

  14. Kodonbia asked for Ozil shirt n he gave him, nothing bad there. Ozil performance recently is not bad but not £42m performance. That is d truth.

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