He is Arsenal’s record signing and much was expected of him but let us be factual, he is human and hence, fallible. Such is the story of Arsenal’s record signing Mesut Ozil. His arrival on deadlines day raised hopes and expectations that Arsenal’s saviour had finally arrived. It looked like that for a while as the Gunners churned out beautiful and impressive results with Ozil one of the main actors but as time went on, his form dropped and the same people hailing him started criticizing him. There are many things I believe affected Ozil’s performance this season and in this article, I will like to share some with you.
He arrived a little too late. Maybe he arrived on time to seal the deal but it was a little too late to have a very good season. He missed Arsenal’s pre-season. The pre-season is a key period of preparations for the new season. It is when players bond and the new ones get initiated into the team. It is also a period when players build their fitness. Ozil missed all these. How then were we expecting him to fire on all cylinders?
Another thing I believe affected Ozil’s performance so far this season is the lack of winter break. Coming from the La Liga where he had winter break to recharge his batteries, he was coming to the EPL where it was a marathon with no time for a breather. He was bound to be affected. All these are good excuses but they won’t be tenable next season as he would have been expected to have adapted and acclamatized to the English game. What then is the way forward?
Ozil needs to make pre-season for next season. He really needs to build up his fitness early enough. Unfortunately, it is a World Cup year and how early he returns to the team will be dependent on how far his country, Germany goes at the tournament.
Whatever happens, Wenger needs to give him enough time to recover from the stress of the World Cup and allow him build his fitness to optimum level before throwing him into the fray next season.