German legend Lothar Matthaus has said that he agrees with many pundits and fans that Arsenal playmaker Mesut Ozil is not turning up to perform in the big games for the Gunners this season.
Writing in a column for The Sun, the former Bayern Munich player was critical of the German’s big game mentality. He feels the 28 year old has the ability to change a course of a match, but it doesn’t happen when Arsenal play high profile opposition:
“He is a guy who can make the difference — but in big games I just don’t see him as much as I’d like to see him. That is a problem for Arsenal … and a shame. He has all the quality to win games at the highest level but it doesn’t happen enough.”
Ozil will certainly be out to prove people wrong on one of the biggest stages in European football at the Allianz Arena tonight. Whether his creative abilities will come to the fore however will be dependent on a number of factors.
The German playmaker is suffering a crisis of confidence according to his manager Arsene Wenger, and the need for defensive solidity in the first leg of a European knockout round tie could mean the midfielder will have few opportunities to make an impression in the final third of the pitch. His work rate and off the ball positioning will however be heavily scrutinised by fans and pundits alike in tonight’s game.