Arsenal’s Premier League season is over but the Gunners still have an FA Cup final against Chelsea to look forward to tomorrow.
And it looks like their highest earner Mesut Ozil will once again not feature.
The German has been completely frozen by new manager Mikel Arteta, and although the coach has cited back problems as the reason, it is apparent that he doesn’t trust Ozil to be the driving force of his offense.
The situation seems to have reached a boiling point and it is bound to explode soon so I figured this is the perfect time to share my thoughts on what went wrong with Mesut Ozil’s career at Arsenal and should Arsenal consider getting rid of Mesut Ozil?
Why Did Ozil Fell Out of Favour at Arsenal?
When a player makes £350,000 pounds a week, he is usually the most important piece on his team.
This hasn’t been the case for Ozil for quite some time now.
He secured the contract when Unai Emery was at the helm but hasn’t been able to match the high expectations.
He is clearly a very talented player and his skill set is quite unique. His vision and off the ball movement can make him the deadliest number 10 in world football and he was very close to that mark back when he was playing for Real Madrid.
Arsenal fans were ecstatic when Arsene Wenger brought him to London back in 2013 and with good reason.
Ozil was exactly the marquee signing they were begging for.
On paper, the German had everything in his locker to become a central figure of Arsenal’s revival but this never came to be.
To be fair, Mesut has had quite a few world-class performances in the last 7 years, however, his inconsistency and complete lack of interest in some crunch games stood out.
In my humble opinion, the guy is simply not cut out to be the main man.
At Real Madrid, he was surrounded with stars with all the spotlight on Cristiano Ronaldo and he flourished in that environment.
When he signed for Arsenal, it was expected of him to be the leader and someone other players turn to when the going gets tough.
Unfortunately, Ozil simply doesn’t have that in his character.
He is a brilliant footballer but his shaky mentality made him an easy target for both fans and the media.
I believe Wenger had the right formula for him but even his complete trust in the player couldn’t get him to produce on a regular basis.
When you add his injury record to the fold, it’s easy to see why we never really saw Ozil’s true potential in England.
How Should Arsenal Handle the Ozil Situation?
There’s no easy answer to this.
Naturally, Arteta is thinking long-term, and having someone who earns £350, 000 and does not play is not exactly ideal.
Furthermore, the Spanish manager has made it clear that he wants to change the mentality of his players and this is nearly impossible with the German.
In my view, he is uncoachable in that regard and will never change his game or attitude.
When you put all these things together, it sounds logical for the club to let the player go.
However, this is easier said than done.
Ozil still has one more year to go on his lucrative contract and his agent Erkut Sogut has publicly stated that the player is not going anywhere this summer.
In these modern football times, I have to say I can fully understand where Ozil is coming from.
He will never get that kind of money again and at 31 years of age, it will be very hard for him to entice a big European football team to buy him after his failure to become a Premier League great.
On the other hand, if Mesut Ozil’s priority is playing football, he should probably just let go of the money and go somewhere where he can thrive again.
Whatever happens, this will be one of Arteta’s biggest tests in his early tenure as Arsenal boss and we will also learn a lot about Ozil’s true character.
Things can get really ugly and I hope both sides avoid this and go on their separate paths peacefully. As, I for one, don’t really see a way back for the German at Arsenal.