Some love him, others think he could do more for the cause. No one argues that he doesn’t have all the ability in the world. We’re talking Mesut Ozil, the Arsenal playmaker who continues to divide opinion among supporters of the Gunners.
And in a summer when manager Unai Emery must get all of his transfers spot-on and use his limited budget (Some estimate the figure as low as £50million) wisely, some Arsenal fans argue that getting Germany World Cup Winner Ozil off the books (he is said to earn £350,000 a week) would free up much-needed funds.
In short, Ozil confounds fans and critics because in some games he simply disappears — while in others (more often than not these matches occur at the Emirates Stadium) he can produce wondrous ability, deft touches and a nose for a killer pass and goals, too. The crux is that he is seen as a player who can be hot or cold; and the consensus seems to be at the level Emery’s outfit find themselves — struggling to break into the upper echelons of the elite in the Premier League — this isn’t enough.
Speculation as to his future with Arsenal continues — and the negatives continue in this regard because of his last performance for the Gunners, which came against Chelsea in a disastrous Europa League final. The North London side lost 4-1 to their capital rivals and Ozil was taken off late on in the second half having barely contrinuted anything of note.
Now, one former Gunners ace has aired his views on the often-talismanic, often-invisible star. Ray Parlour says the former Real Madrid ace needs to find the kind of consistency that Dutch master Dennis Bergkamp displayed in the famous red and white shirts.
“If Mesut is going to play a part in getting Arsenal back in the top four, then the club should keep him, but he has got to work hard. I played with Dennis Bergkamp and he very rarely had a poor game — you always knew what you would get out of him — and that is what Mesut needs to do, too.”
Ex-England grafter Parlour, who also played for Middlesbrough, says that the best players are consistent and adds that he wants to want to see that from Ozil, adding:
“He is a quality player but he goes in and out of games, and it could be argued that he goes missing in the big matches. That is when you need your top men to perform.
“He should have that in his locker. He has won the World Cup and starred for massive clubs. He just needs to show that desire to play for his team-mates and show more energy.”