The issue that has divided Arsenal fans the most has been the elongated absence of Mesut Ozil from the starting line up for most games since Christmas. Many fans have been putting this down to an ongoing dispute between Emery and Ozil but the boss has been saying that he will pick the German when he feels he is totally recovered. That finally happened on Thursday and after the game our defender Sokratis (who has also been on the injury list) has come out to say that Ozil was definitely not feeling at his best.
The Greek defender said after the game: “He played very well. Mesut is a fantastic player and when he is fit he is one of the most important players in the team.
“Of course when something is not going well, everybody is there to criticise but we have to see also what Mesut did in the last years for this team. All the team, all the players are behind him and we need a good Mesut to go [forward] because we know that he is very important for us.
“He was sick, he had some problems but after he came back for training, it was the same situation as me. When I was injured and I came back, it is not that I have to play from the first game in the first 11. Now, he is good. He did well yesterday and I hope in the next games he will go in front like this.
“He enjoys himself and we enjoy that he is with us. But when you are injured, it is difficult. Also, I feel in the first 10 minutes, I felt like a fish out of water yesterday as I was out for one month. Mesut is very important, he is a very good guy and we need him.”
So, it is obvious that the players don’t think that Ozil was feigning injury, and they should know better than anyone. Perhaps there never was a rift with Emery, and the Spaniard was simply waiting for Ozil to prove his fitness in training before picking him?
Could it be (shock horror) that the ñproblems were purely made up by the media?