The transfer of a footballer from one club to the other is filled with complications especially when it means transferring to a different country and culture. The change of club and the fans, teammates and staff around a player massively impact the player’s psyche. One of those transfers took place when in 2013 Mesut Ozil, one of the best prospects in world football joined Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal for €50 million.
After a bright start to his career in a new country, everything started to go downhill pretty quickly as he started to go out of favour. Towards the latter stages of Wenger’s stint at Arsenal, the French manager started to look for other options. The next manager Unai Emery tried to bring Ozil back into the starting eleven but quite certainly did not go well amongst the teammates. During this period, he signed an extension with Arsenal and became the highest-paid player at the club and that raised a few eyebrows in the dressing room. The Spanish manager eventually realised that there were fitter players than him in the squad and he started to look for other options within the team.
Things did not go down well with the next manager Mikel Arteta either. Arteta tried to incorporate Ozil into his plans and gave him a position in the starting lineup. But in the end, he decided to terminate Ozil’s contract to cut him off from his plans at the club.
Mesut Ozil at Arsenal – A Hero or A Zero?
Looking back at all these, Ozil’s former teammate and Arsenal icon Nacho Monreal believes that Ozil planted the seed of his own exit from the club. His attitude towards his teammates and the badge made him fall out of favour at Arsenal. In a recent interview, Nacho revealed, “Ozil’s problem is that he had problems with everyone”.
The departure and downfall of Ozil remains one of the most saddening and surprising things in world football in recent years and he only has himself to blame for it. His work rate and commitment were often a subject of scrutiny in the eyes of the media and that eventually caught up to him. However painful it may be to say, the truth is that Ozil failed to cope with the pace and pressure of top-level football past a certain point due to his approach towards the game.