The REAL reason why Mesut Özil has been axed from Arsenal

“What’s going on here?!”

For longer than I care to remember, the Mesut Özil saga has been going on and on, which hasn’t made Arsenal or the player look particularly great by any stretch.

It all came to head in the last week or so, first when Özil was excluded from the Europa League squad. The reaction to that was so-so, and a section of Arsenal fans weren’t happy with that news.

But then it all kicked off on Tuesday when he was was surprisingly left out of the Premier League club on Tuesday. The fan reaction was intense to say the least!

There seems to be a lot of anger, confusion and debate as to why Mesut Özil has been frozen out of the club, and here I explain why this has happened.

First of all, I want to get out of the way the ludicrous claim made on Twitter (and something that seems to have gained some traction) that Özil has been left out because of his comments regarding human rights, Muslims and China. As pointed out by many online, he played for 3 months after making these comments and played started all 10 games under Arteta immediately after making these statements, before the COVID-19 pandemic hit. The BBC Sport website have a good piece on why the political stance of Özil is not the reason why he has been left out, and how it’s a smokescreen for the real reasons.

Football is a very emotive topic but let’s just sit back and take a look at the facts.

During Arsene Wenger’s reign, he had problems with Özil and regularly had to leave him out of the squad. Remember when he was missing on match days? Özil was given time off by Arsene during the season if he didn’t fancy playing!

Then under Unai Emery, he had the same issues. But instead of granting Özil time off whenever he wanted, he demanded the player give 110% and give everything for the team. What resulted was a power struggle between player and manager, and after Emery left him out the fans turned against him which ended up with the Spaniard losing his job.

He played most games under Freddie’s short tenure, but even then he didn’t start every game.

Then we come to Mikel Arteta. There are many reasonable explanations and justifications why Mesut Özil has been dropped so I’ll try to go through them all.

Firstly let’s consider the history between Arteta and Özil. They played together for 3 seasons and did very well during that time, winning the FA Cup twice. If anyone knows how good Özil is first hand, it will be the Arsenal manager because he played week in week out alongside him! Arteta would have seen him in training, on the pitch and in the dressing room on an almost daily basis.

And that is what Arsenal fans have a problem with understanding – the talent of Mesut Özil. Hs ability is something no-one has ever disputed. He has the talent, the issue is his effort, application and dedication. And this is the point most Arsenal fans seem to be completely missing.

Mikel Arteta is a manager that has very specific requirements and needs from his players. And one of them is 100% complete dedication and commitment to the cause. He has a specific way of playing the game and that is something he will not deviate from – and nor should he. You’ve heard about these ‘non-negotiables’ time and time again from him, and these are real. You either sign up with Arteta’s vision or you don’t. And with Aubameyang and most of the squad, they believe in his plans for making Arsenal a real force again.

What Arteta is doing, and what he has to do, is show strong leadership and that is what every Arsenal fan should be wanting and quite frankly, hoping for. He has come in with his own ideas and is willing to stick to them. That’s what any good manager needs to do.

Özil has clearly not adhered or agreed to these important principles and the only thing Arteta can do as a strong leader that the team will ultimately respect is to live and die by his beliefs.

Mikel Arteta cannot allow to be seen to give Özil any leeway whatsoever because he will seem weak to the rest of the squad and that is something he cannot allow to do. That’s what started the demise for Unai Emery and if we want to improve as a team and a club, that is unthinkable.

So here we are, it’s that simple.

The reason why Özil has been dropped is because he isn’t putting in the graft and hard work required by a Mikel Arteta side.

Can you imagine what would happen if Arteta let Özil get away with murder and gave him allowances time and time again, like Arsene Wenger did? He would quickly lose respect in the dressing room and the team would end up in a downward spiral.

The rest is just smoke and mirrors that the media love to lap up. First it was the fact that Özil refused a pay cut, then it was the messages regarding Uighur Muslims in China and then we had Özil offering to pay Gunnersaurus’s wages – it’s just a big circus which is just boring now.

The reason why this is overblown compared to if it was another players is because of Özil’s popularity. He has 22.3 million followers on Instagram, and 25.1 million followers on Twitter. This guy is an a global superstar, and along with it literally has millions upon millions of loyal supporters. So when the perception is that he’s been slighted or wronged, then millions of fans are going to be vocal about it.

It’s similar to Paul Pobga at Manchester United. Football merit has gone out of the window during his time there, and all that matters with him is not dedicating himself to the team and club, but selling merchandise, football boots and posting selfies on Instagram.

That is the world we live in today you just have to accept that some footballers aren’t footballers any more, but celebrities. We all know Özil’s activities outside of football, and rightly or wrongly those are more important to him.

I’ll end on this note. Mikel Arteta is coming into a football club which is in dire straits, has dropped from being a Top 4 club to a mid table club under Unai Emery – the fans are angry and the team is not performing. Do you think in your right mind someone like Arteta, who has regularly shown to be a strong leader and a man who knows his own mind, would drop Mesut Özil if he was absolutely bossing it in training, showing he’s the best player and dominating training sessions? If he was giving absolutely everything in training and being an example to others? Behave yourself.

If Özil was truly an asset to the team and could make us better, he would be one of the first names on Mikel Arteta’s team sheet, guaranteed.


64 thoughts on “The REAL reason why Mesut Özil has been axed from Arsenal

    • Yeah, he is clearly up to the task and for me is doing an excellent job so far. He needs the backing of all the fans and this Özil noise is an unwelcome distraction.

      The sooner Özil leaves the better as far as I’m concerned.

    • I read that he was taken off Chinese pro evo / fifa game. Also the Chinese government didn’t air the Man City v Arsenal game. Which was Ozils last game for us.
      Which would of lost revenue for someone down the line.
      Are you Chinese government by any chance??

  1. I must admit, I was expecting something different to this, when I clicked on the headline. Instead, an excellent article, that cut through the bullshit and is bang on. Good work. – Gooner since ’77 and journalist

    • Thank you for the feedback, it is much appreciated!

      The fans energy should be focused on backing the team, club and manager, and helping them push through to that next level.

      This sideshow isn’t doing the club any good, and hopefully Özil can move on soon.

  2. “The REAL reason”. You used this twice. In the headline and again in the body of the article.
    Where is your proof, who are your sources, has this come from the club, has this been said by Ozil or his entourage, can you prove this with concrete evidence????..No is the answer.
    This is your OPIONION. I’m not doubting you are wrong and I agree with you but to make a bold statement like “The REAL reason” you need to back it up with concrete evidence, not fans Twitter rants.
    Everyone has a right to give their opinions, share their thoughts and air their views in a public domain but it needs to be made clear that it is just an opinion and not a 100% true fact.
    Other than that well done on your article.

    • 1. What’s wrong with reusing words?

      2. Arteta has repeatedly said it’s for football reasons alone. Why would anyone believe Arteta is lying? He has been upfront and honest since he arrived at the club, and has even been honest and blunt about the board not supporting his transfer dealings. He says what he thinks.

      3. I’m a bit confused about your last statement but I think there was compliment in there! I appreciate the feedback and thank you for reading and leaving a comment.

  3. Your personal thought…
    There is no way Ozil could be omitted in the team when players like willock n even kolasinac are ahead of him…
    Does it makes sense to you???

    • Did you read the article?

      I’m going to assume you are a big fan of Mesut Özil.

      So why do players like Daniel James, Scott McTominay and Fred get into the Manchester United side over Paul Pobga? Just because you’re a big name on Twitter doesn’t mean you’re the best player for that position does it?

      Wilcock is giving 110% and following Arteta’s philosophy, and clearly Özil is not, as I’ve already explained in the article.

      And Kolasinac doesn’t even play the same position to Özil so no idea why you threw that in there.

    • Of course it does. Wenger himself said Ozil lacks discipline and is sensitive. He as always plays the victim. Every manager except Wenger has dropped him for his attitude or effort. I personally think it involves money also. His 350k wage i imagine is heavily incentive laden and by not playing him i imagine we save 100k + a week over course of contract

  4. Finally, an article which cuts through the bollocks and tells it how it is! Why everyone loves to overcomplicate things amazes me. Well, it’s for clickbait articles mainly.

  5. Excellent piece
    It’s exactly how I see the situation
    Sad to see such a wonderful talent that has been so heavily decorated from the beautiful game, destroying his legacy in the most ugly way.
    Arteta is showing his strength and showing how nobody is bigger than the club no matter there profile.
    Good for him.
    More importantly, good for Arsenal

    • Thank you for your feedback, and I completely agree with you.

      Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s sad how it ended. But the talk of loyalty this and loyalty that is no longer a piece of the current footballing landscape. He was clearly told to move on as he’s not part of the new managers plans and he’s decided to dig his heels in and stay. The vast majority of players when they’re told they’re no longer needed, just move on.

      Özil fanatics fail to realise that he has been on the decline over the last few seasons and doesn’t fit into Arteta’s high intensity, organised approach.

  6. I completely agree with your views man!
    Absolutely spot on with your analysis.

    In deed you missed something regarding the short time with Freddie in charge. Recall one of Freddie’s last games, Ozil started and put in a thoroughly abject performance. Freddie then subs him, and he is absolutely livid.
    In the post match comments, Freddie is forced to issue a warning about his behavior. I guarantee you, if Freddie had carried on as manager, it would have been only a matter of time before he would have dropped Ozil.
    The guy will have issues with any serious manager, and if he doesnt up his game, he will have same issues even after leaving in the Summer!!!

    • Thanks for your comment!

      Yes you’re right about that – forgot the tantrum he had under Freddie! His poor attitude is something a lot of Arsenal fans seem to forget.

      Arteta is a clever guy and realises we’re better off without Özil and I’m more than happy to support our manager.

  7. How on earth will you be paying who don’t render any form services to you. It only happened in a weak club like arsenal while others are suffering on the field and are paid less. What a useless club.

  8. You almost had me convinced that you actually know what real reason is.
    But you simply reiterated what Arteta said.
    This can be truth of course – in fact I hope it is everything relevant – but I don’t see much value in simply believing in everything one party says and disregarding everything from the other side. Even so, that doesn’t make it eh REAL reason. That is just summarizing interviews and articles.

    • It’s what I honestly believe is the truth. I haven’t just repeated what Arteta has said – I’ve looked at all the reports and evidence and concluded that the message about Uighur Muslims, the issues over a pay cut and other rubbish that’s been in the media are just that. Rubbish.

      But people don’t want to believe the simple truth that his attitude and work rate are poor, plus he’s on the decline.

      People are acting like he’s in the form of his life and as if he’s a prime Dennis Bergkamp, which is so wide off the mark it’s untrue.

      • I don’t challenge your research on the topic.
        But – firstly – the phrase “the real truth” implies something contradicting the main narrative. For example if you have sources or proof saying that Arteta (or Vinai or Edu, doesn’t matter) threatened Özil that if he takes the 8M loyalty bonus that he was entitled to in his contract then he will never play again for Arsenal; and he didn’t comply so hence the axe, that could qualify for “the real truth”.

        Secondly I struggle that you have any evidence about Mesut’s unacceptable work rate. As I don’t have any on his exemplary work rate either. My main argument that there is something fishy in the “simple truth” is that keeping Sokratis at the Arsenal (albeit having offers of 5-6M from Italy) and putting Guendouzi on the EPL squad even though he is loaned to Hertha is so goddamned unprofessional that I would rather believe that it served as a purpose to exclude Özil from the list than we have so stupid executives on the board.

        • No evidence of Ozil’s of unacceptable work rate….you cannot be serious.
          Even his biggest fans accept that he doesn’t work hard enough

        • There is a lot of noise going around and even with the evidence / official reports that have come out, people want to paint a different narrative which favours Özil and there is literally no evidence to support this.

          If you watch Arsenal football matches you must know that Özil isn’t the model footballer? He’s had tantrums when he’s been substituted, he has gone missing in many games and he doesn’t tackle or track back. Have you seen Aubameyang under Arteta? He’s completely on board with his vision and tracks back like I’ve never seen before in all the years I’ve seen him at Arsenal and at Borussia Dortmund. If Özil was willing to do that, he would 100% be in the Arsenal squad today, guaranteed.

  9. IMO this is ? your opinion which doesn’t have to be the truth. However I believe the real truth n reason (not yours or mine) will eventually see the light of the day someday ( remember I said so) but for now we’ll read articles like yours justifying both parties. All the best mate.

    • I don’t think the real truth is coming trough. (At least not for 10 years. Maybe some day as a part of an autobiography book.)
      There are too many NDAs and legal tricks. And even if Özil – or somebody else – would be allowed to come up, they would probably still choose not to do that as they don’t want to harm the club.

  10. Arsenal manager and bord have Socailism,If Ozil is bad bassing on ur lem excuses, have they given him any match to prove? Is wilock better than ozil? Imagine u have Ozil on the pitch,he will contribute much for the team to prove Wat they are talking bout him is wrong. Socialism is killing Arsenal.

  11. To believe that leaving Mesut Özil out of the Europa and Premier league squad is for football reasons is being naive. There is a lot going on in the management of Arsenal that people will soon find out. They are nasty and not LOYAL to their staff and players. You can see it from what they did to Kochieny, Ramsey, Saliiba, Socrates, Özil. 55 staff and Gunnersaurus. The whole atmosphere at Arsenal is not a family atmosphere anymore. Partey ‘s crew didn’t want him to come to Arsenal because they didn’t trust the management. They waited for Chelsea to make a move. But that didn’t matérialise. Players of these days are sensitive and very soon you will see players not giving 100% to the club. Mark my words.
    Arteta does what the Management tell him to do. He is a rookie coach. And they have rewarded him by making him manager. The real REASON Mesut is not playing is Money and politics that Arsenal dosent like. From thé German incident to China and Gunnersaurus. And of course the bonuses Mesut earns when he plays.
    Arteta has lack of creativity in his team and he says one of the best creative players in the world can make it in his team. Well we wait and see.

    • What did the Arsenal board do to Koscielny, Ramsey, Saliba and Sokratis?

      How do you know Partey don’t trust the Arsenal management? And if that were the case then he wouldn’t have come here would he? There seems to be a lot of contradictions in the statements you make.

      And finally, if it was about money then the best thing to do is have Özil in the squad because otherwise you’re literally throwing money away, no?

  12. Zillow WAS a talent, so much so that his deficiencies could be overlooked for what he brought to the team. His day has passed. His positive actions are now outweighed by his deficiencies and in that I mean his choice not to work back when we are out of possession. Arteta requires all outfield players to close down, not as Ozick does as he jogs back as slowly as possible so that he doesn’t catch the opponent on the ball. That is his choice and is acceptable if you are talented in a game such as tennis, but not acceptable in a team game when the other nine are running their socks off. Shape up or ship out unless you have another reason for hanging about (£350,000). Are his comments a reason for him being dropped? Well it doesn’t help when you add up the one plus (ability) against the minus’s attitude, team work etc. He is right re his political view on China but that will not serve him well in a commercial world of football. He talks of loyalty but is happy to sit knowing he will not play which the club have now been made 100% clear. Leave while you can still hold your head up if not high. Every dog has his day and his day has gone.

    • Thanks for leaving a comment, and you’ve made some good points.

      It’s been clear for a long time now that Özil’s day is done but he is being “loyal” by staying at a club that is having financial issues and pocketing £350k a week? If he was loyal he would have moved on when he knew he wasn’t wanted.

      In the past, Arsenal greats such as Ian Wright, Dennis Bergkamp, Patrick Vieira et al have had discussions with the club and been told thank you very much for what you have done, but we are going to move in a new direction now. What did these greats do? They certainly didn’t dig their heels in, being content to pocket massive wages while sitting at home!

      Even though they loved the club and obviously wanted to stay, the understood the clubs position and Ian Wright moved on to West Ham, Dennis Bergkamp hung up his boots and Patrick Vieira moved on to Juventus. And there’s been many examples of this since – until Mesut Özil that is.

  13. Point on.
    How I wish every arsenal fan backing Ozil would get it clearly just like you pointed out.
    I for one as an arsenal I was once got hurt when I watched Ozil lose possession and all he did was to let other players run for the ball with no effort whatsoever.
    Actually I am one advocate for Ozil being dropped out of the squad.

    • Thank you for you feedback, it is much appreciated!

      I do wonder if these Özil fans actually watched 90 minutes of Arsenal football matches rather than watch his best bits on a YouTube or Twitter video?

  14. I agree entirely with the author particularly with the very last sentence.
    I have also always held the view that if Ozil were pulling his weight on the pitch, every other consideration would have been discarded to play him regularly. After all, the team and the coaches are there to play and win matches.

    • Thanks for the comment and taking time to read the article!

      You make an excellent point. We’re in a results driven business and winning is more important than ever. Even with all the stuff that’s happened off the pitch (which again, I don’t believe that has any bearing on this situation) then you would not drop a player if he was magic.

      Do you think a prime Dennis Bergkamp, Thierry Henry or Robert Pires would be frozen out if they had done the things Özil had done off the pitch? Exactly! If they were giving 110% and smashing it in training they would be in the starting eleven.

  15. The new style of play introduced by Arteta at Arsenal means that all players, regardless of position or pay, have to buy into his style of play, which means that they all have to actively play an attacking role when Arsenal have possession and all have an active defensive role when they are out of possession. Ozil has never bought into his defensive duties, so even if he was 100% effective when Arsenal were in possession (which he is not) then he’s only doing 50% of his job. He is next to useless when it comes to his defensive duties, so clearly he’s not a good fit for Arsenal under Arteta.

  16. aah you want to show the world that you know something while you are just dreaming. There are no facts in you long boring thread of nonsense. why cant you tell us that Arteta is just a liar, a big one he has lied to everyone. Everyone is given a clean slate he claimed, who has been given that chance, no one,torreira was sidelined. gundouzzi was now an outcast. He thinks he is managing some grades ones. That coach is not strong as you would like the world to believe he is full of favoritism full stop. Abumayeang has been playing shit so is his girlfriend or boy friend willian but weeek in and week out they are on the starting line up. which hell of shift does Willian put , please tell your wife this nonsense not the world i am pissed off with your shit.

    • Arteta is far more important than Ozil to the future of Arsenal Football Club. Ozil is not a rainy day player. He needs the team built around him and doesn’t want to do any tracking back.

      Some of his Unai and Freddie performances stunk of laziness and a lack of commitment. See Baku 2019 vs. Chelsea for a typical no-show. That match, when we needed him to show the form his fanbase keep saying he has in him, broke several camels’ backs.

      Let’s move on. Ozil will never play for Arsenal again, which is a good thing for all parties.

    • Why would I tell you all that he’s a liar when that’s not the case?

      You don’t understand why Guendouzi was dropped? Oh deary me!

      I would like to see how you think Aubameyang and Willian have been playing shit? Is this because they haven’t scored a hattrick in every game? I would love to know your metrics on what constitutes a good performance.

  17. Spot on with this assessment so what if he’s a big name who’s won the world cup and our biggest earner if he doesn’t fit in with what the manager wants then he shouldn’t play. So what if players aren’t household names if their giving 100% and playing as the manager expects then they deserve a chance. Watched Ozil many times at he can be brilliant but its probably only once in 6 games and Arteta can’t afford that kind of luxury

    • Thanks for your comment – completely agree with what you’ve said.

      I can’t believe some people are making out that Özil is like a prime Ronaldinho or Bergkamp. His big performances went when Alexis Sanchez departed as his main outlet had gone. Also agree that his good performances came in at around once every 6/7 games.

  18. The Arsenal board and Arteta know the reasons for freezing out Ozil . As long as the team is lacking in creativity whereabouts of Ozil will be asked. Ozil must move on as painful as it seems.

    • Thanks for visiting the site!

      Yes, whatever has gone on with Özil the fact is our creativity is lacking. I certainly don’t think Özil is the answer by any means, but it needs to be a priority in the January transfer window for sure.

  19. Just some random thoughts: Every athlete has his/her time. It’s results that count. In every successful partnership, both partners must constantly strive for its success. It’s the empty drums that make the most noise.

  20. Ozil problem was the pay cut nothing more attached to it, others agree to it while he remain adamant and sturborn to it. He was playing before the pandemic. Who cares about his talent.

    • If Özil was bossing it in training and showing how much he could contribute to the team, it wouldn’t even be an issue – he would be in the starting eleven every week.

      Fact of the matter is he is a fading force who isn’t as good as he used to be, doesn’t fit in Arteta’s system and unfortunately, doesn’t give enough effort.

  21. How come some so called Arsenal fans place a problematic player like Özil above the manager and the club is beyond me. As for his Twitter army, I believe that just a small percentage of them are Arsenal fans. From their names, you can tell they are mostly Turkish football fans proud of their compatriot.

  22. You are joking ,the other day per said is because of his family, ur coach said is because of football reason ,how can u include 3 goalkeepers in European competition ,even you know that something is fishing just admit you don’t like ozil, for his prime don’t even go there,

    • If Özil is on form and giving 110%, I love him. And when he’s been dedicated I’ve backed him to the hilt.

      Clearly he doesn’t care any more so what can you do? The only thing is to freeze him out.

  23. This article is based on opinions and speculations.Don’t think Arsenal supporters are stupid, they know what is happening in the club. If was Arteta I would find to a way to get him involved
    Paying someone 350K for doing nothing is the most stupid thing I have ever seen from a club Management.
    From the look of things, he is gonna run down his contract, and if the club think he will suffer, they’re damn wrong. This guy will probably move to the MLS and continue making money.
    What a waste of money for a club that has made 55 people redundant.I don’t care if he is not in Artetas plans or not, put him on the pitch and demand for him to deliver. That’s what a good coach does, and that’s what I will do if I employ you in my company.

    • So what is really happening at the club then?

      If a player doesn’t want to perform you can’t force him to? It’s not Nazi Germany.

      Your last line is a little disturbing, and it sounds like working for you would be an absolute joy.

  24. Pingback: It’s finally time to forget about Mesut Özil – he is not the “victim” in all this | Arsenal 4 Life Blog | Arsenal News, Match Reports, Previews, Opinions, Fans Forum

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