Freddie Ljungberg opens up on Mesut Ozil situation at Arsenal
Freddie Ljungberg has his say on Mesut Ozil's situation at Arsenal under Mikel Arteta
Freddie Ljungberg has appeared to question Mikel Arteta’s decision to axe Mesut Ozil from his Arsenal squad.
The German playmaker was not included in the Arsenal squad for the current Premier League season and he has not featured for the north London side at all this term.
Ozil is Arsenal’s highest-paid player but it seems unlikely that the midfielder will feature for the Gunners again before his contract expires at the end of this season.
Ljungberg played Ozil in his first three games as Arsenal interim boss last year but the German struggled to hold down a regular spot in the Gunners team following Arteta’s appointment at The Emirates.
The former Arsenal midfielder has now claimed that Ozil could be a valuable player to have in the Gunners squad for certain games.
Speaking in an interview with Sky Sports on Sunday, Ljungberg said: “I can’t answer that question [why Ozil has been left out], that I don’t know.
“But for me, when I chose to play him, it was because a club as Arsenal, when you play at home against – no disrespect – smaller clubs that you think you should dominate, he should be on the pitch to unlock things with his special passes.
“Yes, he maybe doesn’t have the athleticism now that is demanded in the Premier League, so you lose a little bit of that.
“But I felt that we should be good enough. So I think when you play Manchester City and they have the ball all the time and all you do is run after the ball the whole time, maybe that’s not the game for having Mesut on the pitch.
“But if you want creativity, his left foot is fantastic.”
Arsenal were held to a goalless draw by Leeds United at Elland Road in the Premier League on Sunday after being reduced to 10 men following Nicolas Pepe’s red card.
The north London side will attempt to get back to winning ways in the Premier League when they host Wolves at The Emirates this weekend.