Ozil: I need to be more selfish


Mesut Ozil says he needs to be more selfish if he wants to score more goals for Arsenal, but says that his team ethic means he’s almost always looking for a teammate in a better position than he is.

Since joining in August 2013, the German international has netted 12 times for the club, but Arsene Wenger spoke this month about him making a more significant goalscoring contribution this season.

“I want more goals from him,” he said, because he plays in that position and he is a good finisher, but he does not take enough chances when he is in the position when he can finish.

“He is conscious of it and he wants to do it now, so I am confident of that. I believe he is in positions where he can finish better and we want from him 10 goals per season.”

Speaking to Arsenal Player, the former Real Madrid man admitted he’d have to be more selfish in front of goal to do that, something which doesn’t exactly come naturally to him.

“I think now and then I need to become a bit more selfish,” he said, “then I’d definitely score more goals.

“But I’m a player who thinks for the team first and not for my own needs and that’s why I will carry on to play the way I always do. I think that’s one of my distinguishing characteristics.

“In truth I’m more the sort of player who doesn’t really go for goal, I tend to look for my team-mates and think, ‘Can I play this pass?’

However, while admitting the success of the team is his first priority, he said, “I want to score more goals than in the last two seasons and that’s my aim for this season.”

Saturday hat-trick would nice Mesut, cheers.

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Mein Bergkampf

I think the whole team needs to take this on board. We seem to always end up out wide when we can’t pass through defences. We’ve all screamed shoot at the TV multiple times this season only for our boys to feign to shoot and try intricate passes. It’s not just that shooting from distance can lead to direct goals, they can deflect, cause the goalkeeper to spill or just fire up the crowd with something positive. The thing about Arsenal is they always…..


we say this here but the moment ramsey takes a shot from outside everyone boos him.. and i seriously dont know why cazorla is not shooting at all .. for someone with his technical ability he should be finding the net more often


Cazorla usually has at least a couple pops per game, and usually always has at least one mega chance per game. Unfortunately in open play he is a woeful finisher. There’s almost a timidness to it.



Cazorla is one of the few who’s not afraid to take a crack from distance in open play, but sadly he will only ever score one these if the goal is moved to row Z. Once he learns to lean forward on a shot instead of back, he’ll start to bury a few more.


Well Cazorla does take shots but having to come from so deep nowadays makes it more difficult especially with his height. If he were in The 10 position (where Ozil is) then you would see him score loads more and assist as well. Actually think he is better than Ozil in that position and more of a threat with his two-footed ability as Mesut has to go back to his £42mil left leg and therefore more predictable.


have you seen Cazorla trying to shoot lately? For someone with his technical brilliance i can’t fathom why he can’t shoot.


Lost his boots on holiday. In all seriousness though, it is very strange that a player of Cazorla’s calibre is so poor in the shot from distance. Good to hear that Ozil is prepared to be ‘more selfish’ in the finish though – seeing as for some strange reason greatness is being measured in goals, rather than overall team play, vision etc – might finally put some of the BBC and Sky pundits in their place. Idiots. The only other player I’d like to see more from this year, in terms of goals in Chamberlain, he doesn’t seem afraid to… Read more »


Totally agree! And that would put less pressure on our lone strikers and give the defenders something else to think about. And this is exactly why I like Cazorla in the number 10 role because of his unpredictability (whether it is left foot or right foot, is he going to shoot or pass. While for Ozil all the defender is going to worry about is who is he gonna pass to next. Ozil is good but does frustrate in that sense. CASE IN POINT: ON 6:25 IN THE LIVERPOOL GAME there is a progression of play with Ramsey pulling the… Read more »

the only sam is nelson

he’s superb is Mesut – i feel lucky to be watching him at the grove week in, week out. it would be even better to see him channeling the Ox now and again, though, and having a shot when he gets within range.


Fuckin a!

Tee Söng

If the team need him to score more goals, then scoring more goals IS playing for the team.


I understand completely what you mean. However, i think what he means that in situations where he can shoot from a tight angle or play a ball across to get a tap in, he will play the pass instead. But i understand what you mean, i wish he would be selfish too, because im sure his finishing isn’t half bad


the difference is as simple as alexis vs ozil.. both want to win it for the team.. they just have different style..


He’s a bit like Riquelme in that respect (without the ego and darker personality shades), likes to facilitate. Anyway, he needs people making runs, in a team where everyone wants the ball to feet (ramsey is an exception, willing to run in behind, but his problem is that defense suffers; walcott is the other one; Welbeck?). Anyway, does anyone else think we play the most physically exhausting style in the league? Every time we move the ball up, you need balance and composure to pass on the move, and often when the attack breaks down, our narrow style means at… Read more »

Tshaka the gooner

And chasing back Mesut and a lil bit aggression

chippy's chip

But he is the creator of chances that giroud is supposed to finish??


But how many sure chances has he created for Giroud… sure chances being, that if Mesut Ozil were at the end of them he would definitely score?! Last assist he gave Giroud had to pick the ball from behind him somewhere in the sky and yet we discredit Giroud’s ability and skill.


Think it comes more down to Ozil trusting Giroud’s ability. Which is crucial, if Mesut didn’t think Olivier could’ve put that away he would, in the role of the playmaker, put the ball somewhere else, if he puts it somewhere else, the defender gets a block in/Giroud has to do more and the ‘shot’ becomes less spontaneous therefore the keeper can position himself better. If you haven’t read it yet, read Bergkamp’s autobiography, how he describes the way he sees the game is a real insight to that kind of players thinking on the pitch. I think Ozil is definitely… Read more »


So you’re one of those too? I implore you take some time and watch only Mesut’s game. Watch his every move and I guarantee you wouldn’t say that to him any more than any other player. If anything all he needs is a body language specialist. And anyway, he doesn’t need to prove he is doing what he is doing just because people don’t see it. For me, he’s been our best player in the last couple games. Looks much more comfortable in game as well. With the goals as well, he’ll have completed his progression to a full PL… Read more »


Remember the screamer he scored at the World Cup a few years ago.

Want to see more of that fella.


I would love to see him become more selfish, he’s got a hell of a shot on him all you have to do is go back and check his goals from his Werder Bremen & Schalke days and see him smashing in goals, would love that to happen along with his assists! Might shut the haters up once and for all

Martin Finley

But then he went to Madrid where they tailored him to put Ronaldo through on goal and stop thinking about himself. Hehe

But would love to see him smack in some screamers again. He got good finishing technique if only he would care to use it 🙂


Im all for the intricate passing around the box and looking for the better option but mix it up sometimes and just have a crack. Suprising the opponent with unpredictability will make us better. (Advice goes for everyone)

Lightening Pace

Agreed. And how about a few midfielders making runs beyond Giroud instead of the continuous short passing around the edge of the box in line with or just behind Giroud.
So frustrating because these guys we have right now are so talented and so capable that if they did take more chances of running beyond the big man those glorious opportunities will present themselves more often.
So, as you say mix it up a bit!


Seems like a recurring problem with Arsenal, it’s like they are coached to play that way.


I hate that dilly dally around the box…its like de javu each time i see that shit.

Arsene should inject abit of forward runs by ozil and ramsey when Giroud finds himself outwide. He normally crosses but there are no takers/runners.

Also the tactic of standing offside intentionally when in the final third could open up a pass for an unseen ONside player.

We need something different is all im saying from this players is all i’m saying.


That’s more like it, fella. Bang one past the Toon and start as you mean to go on.

Ya gunners ya!


Still remember that side-foot volley goal he scored against Napoli on his CL debut for us. Damn, we looked imperious that day!


Or the side footed volley he scored against Sp*rs.


Probably my best arsenal match in recent memory. The whole Emirates was rocking and boy, did they put up a great show.


Would you guys think Ozil has it in him to go for goals? I haven’t really seen him bash the ball much. I am aware that it isn’t necessary for him to bash the ball in, but the kind of shots he takes are good as passes but not powerful enough for them to beat the keeper. He can get away from defenders, beat his man, place the ball nicely, but whether he can shoot well enough is something I am not sure of.


The free kick against Liverpool last season wasn’t terrible 😉

Just signed up to reply to this comment

Watch some of his clips from his Werder Bremen/ Schalke days. He smashed it in then alright. And he also scored in pre season against Lyon like that.

Hoosier Gunner

For the goal Theo scored vs Leicester last season, Ozil took a vicious, swerving shot that completely fooled Leicester. It was very unexpected even for the viewer, knowing him. A bit more of that would be nice to see. I’m sure one of those shots is bound to go in, if he takes them with a bit more regularity.


Walcot made a similar statement during RVP days. Hopefully the manager can snap him out of it as he did for Theo

mlog oghale

he should do so & stop talking, frankly Arsenal players talk to much, go ahead & show us with action then we’ll do the talking for yhu as fans!


Thank you Phil Neville.


No problem, Wenger. Sometimes you need a kick up your arse


This reveals a consciousness in the dressing room regarding Giroud’s inability to be effective in front of goal. He has the skill set to be clinical and thus deadly. However, I would be concerned if this was the only strategy left in our arsenal. Things need to change in a holistic manner. We may not like it, but we have to accept that the game in England was massively transformed by Abramovich and crew. It is well known that the board trusts Wenger very much. To ensure that we reap the benefits of having him in our ranks for such… Read more »


It reveals nothing of the sort from the dressing room. That is quite a leap in logic.

After that opening statement I was disinclined to read any further.


Logic is relative Mpls. Wenger’s logic produced Henry. Mourinho’s logic calls him a specialist in failure. What’s your point?


Logic certainly is relative.

Assuming you can deduce that the players in the dressing room are doubting Giroud just because Ozil says he needs to shoot more is silly at best.

This is not a single Goalscorer squad. Maybe he doubts Ramsey, or Alexis, or Theo, or Ox. Or maybe he doesn’t doubt any of his teammates and wants to better himself and contribute goals so we have more ways of winning.

That’s my point.


Is anyone else tired of mpls? I believe mpls is some indecipherable code for ‘I am Arséne’


Let’s reduce this to a very simple argument, IF our said main striker is banging in the goals with the chances Ozil has created for him and thus contributing to wins for the squad, then Ozil would not make this statement. In fact there would be more calls for Ozil to continue his style of unselfish assisting rather than the selfish goalscoring instinct paraded in his above statement.


Ozil’s goal target was set before the season started, and he has said this before. There is no reason this statement has anything to do with the dressing room’s confidence in Giroud.

Giroud, Alexis, Ramsey, Theo, Ox, and yes, Ozil, should All be banging them in when they have a goal scoring chance. We are not a one Goalscorer squad, so it does not make sense to blame one player. It seems to me that’s a good thing.


Ox is the only one who looks like scoring and even he can’t score at the minute; we need world-class striker, but there are none available that I know about so must wait for Welbeck maybe and Jack to return and fire us up


Reply to InjuryGod:

Interesting post, (but I bet you were gutted with “necessarily” and ” together” when you had a read through of the almost perfectly written post! :-))

Buy the way, I love Arsene and that’s it!


Very much 🙂


Yeah Barcelona shifted tactics over the years to taking the cash from f*ckin Qatar to buy any player they can get for too much money.


Like us with Emirates?


Wenger praised Giroud, Walcott and Welbeck alot in the matchday mag. However since Giroud arrived at the flub for all of Wenger’s praise he still tried to sign Higuain, then Suarez and now lately Benzema which suggests to me that Wenger recognices the room for improvement in the striker department and that he probably dont believe as strongly as his praise suggests that Giroud can lead us to the biggest trophies.


Or just the need for more depth!


Higuain and Suarez were both pre-Alexis interests, and I don’t see how they had anything to do with Giroud. If any of the Benzema rumors have any truth – they’re still just ‘clown’ huff at this point – it’s just as likely about having two top playmaking pivot strikers with a bit of size at your disposal. Depth.




Frankly he doesn’t shoot enough, only Alexis Jack Ox and Aaron seem to shoot outside the box and chances are hard to come by especially when they don’t all start same time. So shoot more pls Ozil


His teammates need to convert the chances he creates! Imagine Ozil was feeding Ageuro. I’m sure Aguero would score 40 goals a season.

chippy's chip

Alexis for striker. Theo and ox on wings. Giroud on bench so he cant mess up his barnet ffs


Eh, Blogs was pushing this nonsense this morning with this “And would people complain as much about Mesut Ozil if his teammates had done better than score just 22 times from the 231 chances he’s created since joining club (stat via Opta)?” I compared the number of assists per chances created for Ozil last season, it was about 1 assist for every 10 chances created, for Cazorla it was 1 in 6. Maybe Arsenal are better at converting Cazorla’s chances because those “chances” created were of a higher quality. By the way Fabregas had an assist for every 4 chances… Read more »


A bit blablabla post just to show what we know: Özil is crap and blablabla and in the end an assist/key passes, chances.. whatever… it is made to a player who feels he has the possibility to score and then shoot! We don’t talk about the quality of the last pass, but of the feeling the striker has the ball is good enough for him to shoot and possibly score. BASTA!

Getso gunner

You should

Va va voom

Two players that wouldn’t cost an arm and a leg who are prem proven and will make us outright contenders if not favorites. Wanyama and Charlie Ausin/Berahino. 30m can get both. I was amazed at Charlie Austins 1 in 2 goals record for all his previous clubs, and he didn’t have Ozil there.


He’s insanely good at football, plays for Arsenal and (allegedly) bedding Miss Turkey… He’s already being pretty selfish if you ask me!


Paul: I need to see some wins


Whatever, we need more from our record signing. A player of his calibre should be capable of much more.
Personally, I think Cazorla is a better all rounder in the AM position. I would bench Oezil, push Cazorla forward and pair Ramsey with the Coq in his favoured CM position and play the Ox or Walcott wide.
Now, I know I have committed the capital sin by mentioning Oezil in a not so positive light so, let the thumbs down begin. But that´s my honest opinion.


Your opinion is false, sorry


I totally agree with your opinion and that is based solely on how effective Cazorla and the rest of that midfield are. Ozil suppose to be our assist king yet Cazorla is the one mastering that job and his unpredictability of whether he is going to shoot or pass makes him that more dangerous. Unlike Ozil who we all know will not take the shot unless there is absolutely no one ahead of him and has no other choice and even then will look to pass it. Case in point at about 6:25 in the match vs liverpool when ramsey… Read more »


@Kamergunner: ‘Suggested the very same thing on a previous blog here, ie; benching Oezil and making the same adjustments in formation as you have mooted; for which I received a simular thumbs-down response. Oezil is sublime; I don’t think anyones arguing that point, however he shouldn’t be beyond reproach, which should also be the case for anyone else in the squad. What with Santi, Ramsey and Oezil in the same team, Wenger wants to have his cake and eat it. And he can’t! I’d be happy with him taking the responsibility of actually shooting more, it might serve to add… Read more »


I sometimes wonder what we actually do on the training ground. Because i keep on seeing some basic mistakes on the pitch from our players


I sometimes wonder what we actually do on the training ground. Because i keep on seeing some basic mistakes on the pitch from our players. Surely it will not be wrong for wenger to drill our players on how to shoot from outside the box?


Totally off topic, but I think Zelalem just got 2 assists in his first match for Rangers…..


Yep, thanks for mentioning


This tika taka edge of the box crap is because a) we don’t move the ball forward quickly enough and it all becomes congested and b) we can’t move the ball forward quickly and effectively because we have giroud up top (no pace/movememt) and rambo on the right (no pace/not a wide player). I wish wenger would return to the glory days of a quick direct CF And 2 wide men who will hit the box and every opportunity. I swear if we can buy a young forward with pace, movement and half decent finishing he’ll get 25+ goals per… Read more »


Like Walcott?


we already have him; theo can do a job if given the a crack at the starting spot…but no wenger has to revert to his style of congest-ball…we were winning matches starting theo at the end of last season and even in the community shield…say what you may about his inability to hold the ball but theo gives a different dynamic AT THE START OF GAMES…put giroud on at the 70th minute when you need more physical play when teams defend deep


He would also score more goals if his teammates were more aware – the number of times where he makes a run and is free for a tap-in only for someone to smack it straight at the keeper drives me mental…


On a totally different topic, the Champions League pots have been announced: Pot 1 is Barcelona, Chelsea, Bayern München, Juventus, Benfica, Paris, Zenit, PSV Eindhoven. Pot 2 is Real Madrid, Atlético, Porto, ARSENAL, Manchester United, Valencia, Bayer Leverkusen, Manchester City Pot 3 is Shakhtar Donetsk, Sevilla, Lyon, Dynamo Kyiv, Olympiacos, CSKA Moskva, Galatasaray, Roma Pot 4 is BATE Borisov, Borussia Mönchengladbach, Wolfsburg, Dinamo Zagreb, Maccabi Tel-Aviv, Gent, Malmö, Astana I’d love it if we could get Benfica, Zenit, or PSV from pot 1. I guess the best possible draw would be something like PSV, one of Lyon or Galatasaray, and… Read more »


Who cares?

We’ve got no chance of winning it.

I just hope Wenger takes the Captial One cup seriously. It would be nice to win that one.


maybe treble of 4th place trophy, FA and carling Cup, that warrants a month long parade…

Gooners & Roses

Imagine we play both Ozil and Hleb, that must be fun.


hahahahahaha Hleb was more frustrating than Ozil will ever be. I loved Hleb but he didn’t even a shooting foot!


I don’t think being selfish has worked out for you in an arsenal shirt, remember Bayern/Chelsea at home? Let’s call a spade a spade, you need to work on your confidence in front of goal. Funny Ozil’carrier was built on ingeniously shifting the shooting responsibility. Good thing we know he hasn’t peaked yet…

Ozil's Goggles

I’m calling it out for what it is: False Modesty. It’s not selfish to score goals. The whole idea of this game is to put the damn thing in the net. Bergkamp and Henry scored as much as they “created for others”. There’s no conflict.


Bergkamp had a goal rate close to Özil… period…..


Thank you.


I hear so much that we have all these talented players. No doubt we have some but do we really have so many? If so why aren’t we winning more matches. There’s always an excuse. Nerves. Playing with the handbreak. World cup hangover (that mysteriously only affected arsenal) or the extra champs qualifier. When all the excuses fail we always have “We Live in a world…..” if our players are so good but we finish third or fourth then they are either playing in the wrong system or underperforming. Maybe they just aren’t that good. I mean we used to… Read more »


Ozil does need to be more selfish. He needs to take a page from Fabregas when he turned 23 and started to reap goals for us before discovering his defective DNA issue. Part of our problem scoring is the 4-1-4-1 system can mean if the wide forwards Alexis or Theo or Ox are not able to tuck in enough, we can have Giroud isolated. Particularly when we cross balls into the box, our players have to be alert enough to join Giroud to make numbers in the box. Quite often they are a step or two behind. Ozil playing behind… Read more »


Bring Klopp and we’ll soon see how ozil starts scoring; he will also use the money to bring a top striker and DM.

biafran arse

I prefer Ramsey in that number 10 role,our striking issues isn’t just stemming from Giroud’s very limited talent trying to accommodated Ozil is,he is predictable and subtle. EPL needs Chamberlin and Ramsey,explosiveness


You are on to something there Biafran arse. Come to think of it players of ozils and to some extent Fabregas “subtle” kind of play have rarely won gongs in the epl rather hazard silva bale suarez aguero henry drogba sterling name them, these are the “explosive” players who have gone on to be the best


The money we paid for Oezil is actually whats holding us back. It is hard for Arsene and the fans to accept that he is not as good as we thought and not worth what we paid for. We are trapped sticking with him expecting that he´ll come good, all at the detriment of the team