“Mesut Özil had felt great anticipation. Finally, the Premier League started again, Arsenal’s first game after almost 100 days of a break in England’s top division. “Tomorrow back,” the former Germany international wrote to his 22 million Instagram followers on Tuesday. But then he wasn’t there at all.
Arsenal coach Mikel Arteta surprisingly gave up on Özil in the 0-3 (0:1) win over Manchester City. The fact that he did not appoint the 31-year-old offensive star to his 20-man squad is a source of debate.
Arteta has not yet provided a more detailed explanation. The coach said after the game only that the 2014 world champion had not been there “for tactical reasons.”
Speculation about Özil’s departure
Özil’s absence has sparked new speculation in the British media about an early departure. At Manchester City, Leroy Sané, who has been courted by Bayern, sat on the bench after a long injury break, but has not made his first appearance this season.
According to a report by The Athletic, Özil is not injured. Arteta is said to have been unhappy with the performances of some of his players after a 2-3 draw against second-tier club Brentford. It is unclear whether this was the decisive point for Özil’s non-nomination. Özil played in the test in the second half. At the break, Arsenal had led 1-0.
In any case, Arteno’s decision is astonishing. Özil was part of the starting eleven in the first ten games under the Spanish coach and impressed most of the time in the games.
Özil’s contract with Arsenal runs until 30 June 2021. The portal Transfermarkt.de estimates its market value at 17.5 million euros.
In Manchester, a minute’s silence was held in Manchester to remember the victims of the coronavirus pandemic. Afterwards, players, coaches and referees knelt down to express their support for the protests against racism. The players wore the words “Black Lives Matter” on their jerseys instead of their names.