It is not uncommon for players, especially star players to face criticism from fans and pundits. A poor performance could make the fans pitch their tent against their highly-rated player.
And such scenario has been the case with Arsenal and Mesut Ozil in the last two seasons. Besides Arsene Wenger who is under constant attack from the club’s fans, Ozil has arguably been more criticized than any other player at the club.
The German World Cup winner has always come under intense criticism for his below par poor performances in big games. He was pinpointed as being responsible for Arsenal’s embarrassing 10-2 loss to Bayern Munich in the Champions League.
Against Tottenham, Ozil made little or no impact as he looked disinterested for a larger part of the game as the Gunners lost 0-2 and expectedly he was largely blamed for the defeat.
And now it appears the load of criticism is taking its toll on the German midfielder and he has struggled for form and consistency this season. He has managed only three goals and six league assists , just a third of the 18 assists he has in the Premier League last season.
Leaping to his defence, Wenger who admits Ozil is struggling to deal with the criticism said:
‘I think he embraces the challenge to play big games. Does he embrace the challenge to be criticised? I’m not sure. Does he like to be criticised? I’m not sure.
‘Big players have to carry the responsibility of the team. People look at it like that. ‘Does it suit him having responsibility? I don’t know. I’m not sure.’, reports the Daily Mail.
The £42 million club record signing from Real Madrid in 2013 has only 12 months remaining on his current contract at Arsenal and he is yet to commit his future to the club.
He has reportedly refused to agree to the £250,000 a week deal offered him as he is reportedly holding out for £300,00 a week, though his recent performance has not really shown why he deserves such contract