Wenger: Ozil has a point to prove at Arsenal

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has said Mesut Ozil has a point to prove at the club after criticism that the Germany World Cup winner doesn’t work hard enough for his team, ESPN has reported.

Ozil was condemned by former Manchester United and England midfielder Paul Scholes, who in a newspaper column questioned the contribution of Ozil, as well as his mind set and character. Scholes accused the former Real Madrid midfielder of lacking motivation if he doesn’t have somebody with a stronger mentality alongside him to keep him on his toes.

Wenger, moving to defend Ozil but suggesting Scholes’ criticism was valid, in part, added that Ozil is fully aware of the perception the public has formed of him in his time at the Emirates Stadium. “He has a point to prove and he knows that,” Wenger said regarding Ozil. “We are all in a job where in every single game we have to prove a point. I believe that he has the quality. He puts a lot of effort in to help a team. He works much harder than his style shows.

“You can be cheated [deceived] a little by his style of play,” Wenger continued. “He is fluent, supple and looks like he doesn’t put the effort in, but he does. I knew he had good physical potential, but I didn’t realise how good. He has a huge physical potential.

“I believe that [Scholes’ statement] is wrong,” the manager went on. “Ozil works very hard and he is a great player. A player like Paul Scholes would have loved to play with Mesut Ozil.”

Ozil moved to Arsenal from Madrid in the summer of 2013, Wenger sanctioning a £42.5m transfer to get the playmaker, now 26. Ozil spent three years at the Santiago Bernaneu, making more than 150 appearances and scoring 27 goals.

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