Arteta Doing Kroenkes Dirty Work by Dan Smith
Before the pandemic, Ozil was starting most games under the guidance of Arteta. Since the restart though the midfielder hasnt played a second of football despite a hectic schedule and teams now being allowed to make up to five substitutions.
He has gone from playing every week to not even getting into the squad (he had a bad back on Sunday apparently). That suggests that somethings happened during the lockdown between the player and manager.
The only thing we publicly know is that Ozil was one of our three players to refuse a pay cut. If thats not what it is, then again we need clarification from the Arsenal Board. If theres been a lack of effort in training or a bad attitude, fans will support the decision not to play him, but if not, our coach puts himself under pressure.
Some will argue this weekend we advanced to the last 4 of the FA Cup justifying the decision. I would counter that by pointing out we have also lost 2 out of the 4 matches without the German, and even when we have won there has been a noticeable lack of creativity.
If your 9th in the League and not making chances, its fair to suggest that surely a World Cup winner could at least make a bench when you are now allowed 9 options?
What gooners have to do is not make this an agenda against Ozil. Its got to a point that if you defend him at all your called an Ozil fan boy. It is possible to be in the middle?
Is Ozil past his best? Yes!
Has he come close to justifying his huge wages? No!
Do we have anyone better in his role? Stats suggest not.
If this is us now being strict and refusing to play people unless they are in form, then that sounds fair. Yet how come Ozils the only one? Our entire midfield has scored 3 League goals this campaign, so why is only one person being singled out?
I only care about Arsenal and what helps us win football matches. I am sorry but you will never convince me that tactically a man who has learnt off Pep Guardiola, tactically thinks Matt Smith (yet to start a senior game) is a better option then Ozil.
Anyone who thinks its about high standards of the new regime. That argument falls down when the Arsenal are handing out extensions to the likes of David Luiz and Cedric. Ozils not doing enough to play a second but Luiz is playing well enough to get a new deal?
I dont look at it as Arteta standing up to a big name, I look at him as confirming why he got the job in the first place. A yes man so happy to get the job hes willing to put up with lack of ambition.
His title is head coach. Isnt this the man who so many at Man City credit for getting the very best out of them? So, whats happened? December to March, apparently Ozil was coachable. Now suddenly hes not? If Ozil wasnt on 350,000 grand a week would he then be coachable? If thats the issue, then Arteta is doing the Arsenal Boards dirty work and putting that ahead of the teams best interests.
The Spaniard shouldnt care about wages. His job is to work with what hes got and get the very best out of the resources he has, not to punish someone based on their salary. If the club want Ozil to leave, thats their business. Yet from now till the transfer window, Artetas job is to get the best out of that asset, not just wash your hands of him.
If this was happening because Ozil wasnt good enough then fine but we know other below par performers are playing.
If it was a behaviour issue, then fine but until we hear that then we cant assume that.
What we do know is Stan Kroenke has ordered the wage bill to be slashed over the last couple of years. All parties know if the club had their way then Ozil would have been sold ages ago. He and his agent has made it clear he plans to see out his deal because his family are happy in London, but also, hes not getting even close to another employer paying him his current wage.
Lets remember though that was the clubs choice, he didnt make them offer him such a sum. If your boss wanted to overpay you, would you sign that contract or say actually I dont think you realise Im not that good at my job.
We gambled paying over the odds based on Champions League revenue and soon regretted how many zeroes we put on the deal. That doesnt give the Arsenal Board the right to disrespect him. That would be like a coffee shop failing so you start to pick on your highest earners. It is not the employees fault that those in charge are losing money.
So now Arteta is doing their dirty work.
Not bringing him on.
Not putting him in the squad.
Not giving a detailed reason what the issue is.
Then having the audacity to talk about the values of the club.
This isnt the Arsenal way. We dont treat someone like a scapegoat.
Fans are being taught that this guy has done something wrong, yet when a player wants to leave, or doesnt want to honour a contract, we call him every name in the book. Van Persie, Fabregas and Sanchez are hated for NOT doing what Ozil did committing his future to us.
When it suits us though its okay for us not to be loyal. Lets leave someone to rot and hope he gets so fed up he accepts a move away. Not because we have anyone better in his position, and not because we plan to replace him, but so our owners can save some money.
Wenger left, we saved wages by getting someone worse. We didnt want to offer Ramsey a new deal, saved money and now have no goal.scoring midfielder. Koscielny left, we got his wages off the wage bill and now have a worse defence.
Watch what happens when Ozil leaves . If its 0-0 in the FA Cup Semi-final and you can have one man in the final third, who do you trust more to unlock a defence with a killer pass? Willock? Ceballos? Nelson? Or the man being frozen out?
Hows that putting the team first?