Garth Crooks wrote on his column on BBC Sport about Mikel Arteta’s ‘absurd’ decision to leave Mesut Ozil out of Arsenal’s squad.
The German World Cup winner was one of the first names on the team sheet under Arteta before lockdown. Ozil played well too but things changed drastically when football came to a standstill. The former Real Madrid man hasn’t kicked a ball since and that is hurting us.
Arteta has remained adamant that Ozil’s omission is based on footballing reasons. That was understandable when Arsenal were winning games at the end of last season, but when you look at our form over the last two months, you can’t help but laugh at the Gunners boss’ excuses.
Crooks, like most Arsenal fans, cannot understand Arteta’s reasoning. He has slammed the Gunners boss for leaving Ozil out and has labelled his decision as absurd.
Leaving Ozil out of the squad ‘makes no sense’
He said: “Every once in a while, something happens in football that not only baffles you but has cause to create confusion and conspiracy. The refusal of Arsenal to play Mesut Ozil is bewildering – not just because they are paying him a fortune, but also because this is the worst start the Gunners have had to a season in over 40 years.”
“When Ozil wasn’t at his best (under Emery), he was still good enough for Arsenal. However, since Mikel Arteta succeeded Emery, the situation surrounding Ozil has gone from bad to worse. Every club submits a 25-man squad for the season and the thought of Ozil being incapable of making the cut is absurd, giving rise to other considerations.”
“I have to question the judgement of Arteta leaving Ozil out at all. Such a decision makes no sense. Ozil’s omission contributed to Emery losing his job and it may, during this awful run of games, do the same to Arteta in the end.”
Ozil constantly divides opinion among fans, pundits and the media. A lot can be said about his body language, work rate and his relaxed attitude, but if he was in this Arsenal squad, the likes of Aubameyang and Lacazette would have many more chances than they do now.
If Arsenal fail to bring in a new creative midfielder in January, Ozil has to come back into the squad. Arteta might not want to do that, but ‘football reasons’ just won’t cut it, especially if our terrible form continues.