Monday, May 20, 2024

Arteta explains how Ozil’s influence waxed and waned against Everton

Mikel Arteta says he was pleased with Mesut Ozil’s contribution to Arsenal’s 3-2 win over Everton but admits the player isn’t always suited to games when they turn ragged.

Having missed Thursday’s game win over Olympiacos, the German was restored to the starting lineup on Sunday and produced a tidy performance (he completed 48/52 total passes and 19/22 in the attacking third*) before he was substituted for Matteo Guendouzi with eight minutes remaining.

By that point, the Gunners were very much on the back foot as we looked to close out an advantage given to us by Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang’s second goal of the afternoon, just seconds after the restart.

Asked about the World Cup winner’s performance in his post-game press conference, Arteta said: “I’m very pleased with Mesut. I played with him and I know him, so I tried to push him as much as possible to do what he needs to do because I know how much he can give on the offensive side.

“Today’s game is a good example for Mesut. When we were dominant and the whole process is properly done and you find the player in the right position, he’s the type of winner you want.

“When the game becomes like this, it’s not his game, so he needs his teammates and the right structure and organisation for him to flourish.

“It’s not just about him and sometimes it’s not just his fault, it’s about the team not supporting him with what he needs.”

A third win in seven days has made for a very satisfactory week for Arteta who praised his players’ efforts and the way they reacted to going behind early to Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s early opener.

“I’m really pleased with the performance,” he said. “It’s not easy to play three times in seven days. We came here very late from Greece and then we conceded an early goal as well which mentally [tough].

“The team reacted straight away and we started to dominate the game and impose ourselves, create the chances and score the goals. And then just before half-time, again, a big disappointment to concede the goal from another set-piece, but again we went back into the game, we started to play, we started to dominate the game again.

“But in the last 20 to 25 minutes you could see that energy-wise we dropped a lot. We had a lot of issues with some of the players on the pitch. We tried to make the changes to lift it up but to be fair Everton were better than us in the last 20 to 25 minutes and had some chances to score.”

* via the Stats Zone app

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Özil is now the lubricant to our game would like to see him notch assists again but pre assist matter as well and the work he puts in on both ends is commendable is it worth 350k a week perhas not but that discusion is tired he is here and he contributes.


I completely agree. Would he be Arteta’s man going forward it’s unlikely but like a good coach he knows what he needs for the here and now and he’s using it.
My excitement with the club growing up was always players and yet here we are with a coach whom i want analysis on.
love to see a united fan base and appreciate every one of those fans home and away showing real support

Cultured determination

If anyone’s getting 350k it’s gotta be auba.offer auba a new 4 year contract. 200k next year, 350k for the 3 years after that. Mesut, offer him new contract of 200k or sell him this season.


I would hope that nobody gets 350 unless we somehow land an Mbappe or the like, and I still don’t know if the imbalance and holes that leaves is worth it.


Aubameyang is 31 in June. At some point he’s going to dip physically, when Alexis dropped physically it wasn’t pretty, and Alexis was a monster for us. I love Aubameyang, but offering him a 4yr deal on £350k a week is insane, that’s £72.8million over 4 years, at which point he’ll be 35. How many 31+ yr olds are performing regularly, playing three times a week in Europe? Aubameyang is all about his athleticism, agility, and explosiveness over short distances. He’s not a no9 who holds up the ball, if he loses his athleticism? Then he’s not going to be… Read more »

santi's thigh grab

If Auba were played exclusively in the box where he is most
effective, you could get several years of out of the short run goal
merchant. If the plan is to keep him on the wing then I would
agree with you, sell him. I would keep him and have others run
the wings.

A Different George

Lewandowski is 31. Suarez is 33. Benzema is 32. Aguero is 31. Immobile is 30. Dzeko is 33. Vardy (joint top scorer in Prem) is 33. I exclude the 32 year-old Messi and the 35-year old Ronaldo as being special cases.


Lubricant? Ozil the KY jelly of the Arsenal team. Everyone knows it only has one use and no good when backs to the walls.

canon fodder

When you see Ozil in the flesh, you cannot but wonder how he makes the hardest of things look effortless. He sees a pass before anyone can and when under pressure, he is never flustered. Having to track back and defend zaps him of energy so it’s not unusual to find him substituted towards the end of games


De Bruyne is the best creater in the PL these days, tracks back as well.


So does Arteta. Never has been great at defending but he’s working hard and even been booked for tackling in defence


I meant Ozil not Arteta.


Then why did you say Arteta?


This is facts. Who are the ones disliking the opinion? ?

Martinelli fanboy

Wonder why the down votes and it’s true.


De Bruyne has got a £400M (at least) team around him. Give Gündogan and Sané to Özil…. They worked magic together with Germany. I watched a Liverpool – City some months ago. Not seen him tracking back…
Btw, as many here are eager to remind of Özil’s wages, how much do KDB earn per week? Less?
Maybe it’s time to consider football as what it is: a collective sport. Read Arteta, he says it.


“Why the dislikes”
Because De Bruyne is nothing more than a cross merchant. He probably isn’t the best creator in his own team

A Different George

Come on, that’s a ridiculous comment. I think Ozil is a wonderful player. I also think De Bruyne is great. Messi, too.

house of goons

cross merchant? is that a bad thing (i honestly don’t know what it means) – because I love that ginger fuck. He’s really really good.


Never gets flustered? He is a talented player but he only works under 2 conditions – He has to be at home and/or playing against much weaker opponents. Ozil away from home against better teams is usually one of the worst players on the pitch.


Nothing we have not been unfamiliar with. Generally, he is a 60 minute player. In recent games, he has been OK going a bit longer but you even saw it today around 70 minutes he was walking. Its not a criticism on him per se bc he also worked hard mid week but generally, we need to also tailor ourselves to his output. Its fine being a 55 -60min player so long as within those minutes, you are effective. Thereafter, we have options to rotate in to keep momentum. Willock has been one (maybe Simith-Rowe too for the future) but… Read more »


Totally agreed! Mourinho was getting the best out of him by utilizing him to his fullest in short bursts and substitute him. It also allows for breeding in new players in the same position.

Dave M

Credit to ozil too. I’ve been super critical of his physical effort lately because I’ve been sick of him not getting stuck into the physical stuff as it has been costing us. Nonetheless the last couple games he has put in more effort. It’s still clear he doesn’t commit to the challenge like the rest of the team, but it’s also clear he has been told to stop pulling out of anything physical and get stuck in a bit and he has responded. He remains an enigma; a luxury player with immense talents that only really lacks application and effort… Read more »


Arsenal – Chelsea, we were leading, Özil is substituted, we lose. Arsenal – United, Mikel keeps him on the pitch. Last minutes, he managed to release the pressure from United and keep the ball.
Saying he is a 60-65 minutes player is more than unfounded. When has he goaled against Newcastle? When he lead the charge to goal?


People have their narratives about Ozil, and you can’t change or challenge them. Let it be. Ozil is doing exactly what the club need and expect him to do, as Arteta stated, and we’re winning again. ‘Nuff said.


I like Mikel´s press conferences and interviews.

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

What Arteta said is exactly what I’ve said here about Mesut for a few seasons now. Arteta says it a lot better than me though.


No wonder people are listening, yeah.

Cliff Bastin

We have youth to promote to most first team position in the next few years but we don’t have anyone who can quite replace Ozil when he retires. *shudders* ESR?


Liverpool never replaced Coutinho and they’re doing just fine. We don’t need to replace Ozil or anyone else necessarily, we just need to find another way of playing with the players we have (or will get in the future).


It sums Ozil up more or less. When his team are in control and have a lot of the ball he is usually very good if not fantastic. But when possession is more even, games more stretched or if his team are under sustained pressure, he often struggles to keep up with the pace of the match.

Dr. kNOw

Which is a roundabout way of saying “he lacks the skillset to be useful to his teammates when the team is under pressure.”

And this is what certain gooners claim they are defending, with sound logic??

Make him look useful by masking his flaws, but the bottom line hasn’t changed much. He still has another 15 months, and it will be madness to expect a return to anything resembling previous output.

Down-vote if you like: it doesn’t make the above incorrect or wrong.


Ozil was solid today, and we won the match. As Arteta suggests, with the right structure and organization, and good team play, everyone can be a success at Arsenal. Since Arteta took over, Ozil has done his job very well. There’s really no point in moaning about anything else.


Ozil offers exceptional ball retention, but little else. He’s been on a steady decline for the past 4 years, everything is safe, everything is slow, he offers virtually no tempo to the flow of the game. Didn’t travel to Greece midweek, but looked out on his feet after the hour mark yesterday. Ozil hasn’t done his job very well since Arteta took over, that statement simply isn’t true. He’s an attacking midfielder who rarely shoots or gets into shooting positions. Doesn’t offer anything resembling urgency or drive. His set pieces aren’t even anywhere near the level they used to be,… Read more »


Or you can continue to moan, despite everything.


He’s done OK but “very well” would suggest he’s regularly getting goals and assists, and he’s not!

I think that’s what annoys a lot of the fanbase about Ozil, the feeling that some are lowering standards for their favourite player, one that we know is/was capable of a lot more.


Arteta is building something. Ozil is clearly a big part of that. Try supporting it.


Try supporting it.”

See, this is the kind of comment that winds people up! I have correctly pointed out that our starting no.10 isn’t scoring or assisting regularly and the response is to accuse me of not supporting the team. Ridiculous.


Yes, you’re right, I shouldn’t encourage the positive reception of one of our star players, as that does wind people up. My mistake. I’ve never understood the dislike a section of our fanbase has for him, but I for one don’t appreciate it when people persistently slag a player even when he’s doing exactly what the coach asks of him and when the rest of the players clearly love playing with him. Arteta has been very vocal about a clean slate for these players, because that message is as much for the players as for the fans — it’s time… Read more »


You can “encourage positive reception” all you want, but if someone brings up facts that are contrary to your beliefs you should probably try engaging with those facts constructively. Instead you decided to suggest I, and others that have made similar points “don’t support the team”, which is super cringeworthy really. There’s nothing with pointing out that Ozil hasn’t been producing to the level expected of him (or anyone else playing in that position) and I make no apologies for doing so. The reality is that if Ozil doesn’t start producing goals and assists soon then despite what Arteta is… Read more »


Facts are utterly boring. The facts about Arsenal FC the last few years are depressing; my beliefs in this club and its players, and now its coach, are what keep me coming back here day after day to read and comment. And I think you’re wrong — I think Ozil is performing to the level expected of him by Arteta at the moment. He’s said so time and again. Arteta is a smart coach; he knows that it is a matter of time before Ozil’s distinctive work in the side gets rewarded with the facts to which you refer —… Read more »


I wasn’t defending him really, just pointing out the situations when he’s effective and when he’s not. For some people the pros out-weight the cons, that’s the camp Arteta is in atm and it’ll be interesting to see if he stays there as we enter the business end of the season.


It’s funny how nice some can be to a Pepe or to a Laca (i like both players) ignoring their transfer fees (much higher than several years of Özil wages) and their weekly wages (not that less than Özil’s) claiming that they don’t have the right balls to shine. But nothing of that kind emerges when it comes to Özil. Arteta says it: “It’s not just about him and sometimes it’s not just his fault, it’s about the team not supporting him with what he needs.”


Ozil would kill for Pepe’s numbers this season tbf, and Laca has been widely slated this season.


This is a ridiculous analogy. Pepe’s been here just over 6 months, not 7.5 years like Ozil, Pepe arrived off the back of having no pre-season, having been away with Ivory Coast, and players usually take 6-12 months to settle And even during his adaption, he’s bagged 6 goals and 8 assists. Lacazette has 8 goals and 3 assists, and even though he’s been through a bad couple of months, his work rate or attitude has never been in question. Ozil has 1 goal and 1 assists this season, averaging 0.4 shots per 90, he keeps the ball well, but… Read more »


I mean I went to the game at the weekend. And Ozil was good. To say he is an “absolute waste of space” is so far fetched and stinks of a fan who slates a player regardless of whether they put in a good performance or not. Instances against Everton when no one could keep the ball or mare the wrong decision. He was the only one in the middle of the park that made the right decision and kept things moving and progressed our play forwards. Yes he’s on 1 goal and 1 assist this season. Is it good… Read more »

Martin Dass

Greetings from Malaysia, Mesut is perhaps the only player with a sweet left foot, it takes a genius like Arteta to find the right fit and position for Mesut, for eg against physical teams, he may not fit him. But a very significant improvement is Arteta has found a way with especially, Mesut and Auba on their defensive responsibilities, its a joy to watch them track back, and defend, so you see these are the little puzzles, Arteta has been working on, I totally believe in Arteta to ressurect Arsenal, and we will be challenging for honours, pretty soon with… Read more »


Isn’t it remarkable how, in a relatively short time and under immense pressure, Arteta has improved players that appeared done and dusted? Mustafi, Ozil, Xhaka as well as kids like Saka. This is great for the short term (what’s left of this season). But in the longer term, I agree with dr. kNOw: if we want to progress to the next level, players like Ozil, Mustafi, Xhaka and others will have to be moved on and replaced with better personnel.

Obama Young

Not necessarily better players, but better fits for this club– younger, more athletic, more consistent.


Having him on the bench for half a season is just plain dumb. I really cant understand it. And him and Pepe not being abole to play in the same side? Even worse. Im glad they are playing and contributing to the team as they can and should.

A Different George

Last year we heard how Ozil and Ramsey could not play in the same side. It was nonsense.


I have been screaming exactly this all season. Ozil will only shine when we collectively play better. When we were static and lacking confidence he struggled because his game depends on the people around him to get into dangerous positions. If he was at Barcelona we would never stop hearing about him.

  1. We can see the way forward 

Great having a gaffer who knows the player in and out and can always help the team to get the best out of him and knows when to get him off when the game is beyond him

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