Juan Mata comes out in support of Mesut Ozil calling him a creator and player with a lot of quality.
Manchester United midfielder Juan Mata has voiced his opinion on the situation between Mesut Ozil and Unai Emery. In very diplomatic terms, Mata calls Ozil a quality player who he likes to watch. However, he avoided criticising Emery’s handling of the German playmaker.
‘To be honest, I don’t know what’s going on,’ Mata told the Athletic, as cited by the Metro.
‘I was with Emery for three years in Valencia and I know him very well but I don’t know the day-to-day thing in Arsenal right now. But, of course, Ozil is a creator, a player with a lot of great quality that I like watching.
‘This type of player, this pure No 10, is … how do you say? Extinct? Maybe not extinct, but not as used as before
‘In the past, there was always this pure No 10, behind the striker or the two strikers, depending on the team.
‘With different systems now, that position has evolved into a different one. ‘But these are players I like, where natural talent brings the best of them and they can change a game with a pass or something that nobody else sees.’
Mata is spot on when he says the game has evolved and therein lies the problem for Ozil. The game has evolved but the 30-year-old has not. Mata faced the same problem under Jose Mourinho at Chelsea, albeit they resolved their issues when both where at United together.
Managers expect players to trackback and that includes luxury players. Emery is not the only manager saddled with this type of problem. Mauricio Pochettino has it with Ericksen and Alli at Spurs, Guardiola has it with Jesus and to some extent Aguero.
It is ok saying it is a pleasure to watch a playmaker in full flow but it is not enjoyable when they basically go AWOL.