Mesut Ozil

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Player of the month

Ozil tops November Player of the Month poll

Player of the Month: Mesut Ozil

Mesut Ozil has picked up his first Player of the Month award of the season after a string of impressive performances in November.

The Germany international was unplayable as we won the north London derby, claiming an assist for Shkodran Mustafi’s opener, and then laying on two goals and scoring one himself as we blew away Huddersfield.

Ozil claimed more than half of the votes cast, with Mustafi in second place, Aaron Ramsey in third and Alexis in fourth.

See how well you know our November Player of the Month by taking our quiz below:

Interview

Cech - It reminded me of Zidane’s volley

It's arguably our goal of the season so far, and Petr Cech was certainly impressed with Mesut Ozil's match-winner against Newcastle on Saturday. In fact the strike took him all the way back to 2002, and a famous Real Madrid goal from Zinedine Zidane.

“It was a fantastic goal," the goalkeeper said. "It made me think of the Zidane goal in the Champions League final in Glasgow against Leverkusen. The ball went the other way but the technique was a moment of brilliance which literally won the game.

"He had a fantastic game, the whole game, he was actually brilliant."

Cech added that Ozil is now back to his best, and believes he is a lot fresher than earlier in the season.

“I think sometimes people forget that when you play for a top national team then you play every week, play every summer, have a short break and you carry on, carry on, carry on – I think the first few months of the season the fatigue caught up with him. You could see he was as not as sharp as he is now which I think he benefits from."

The goalkeeper is also pleased with his own form this season. He kept his ninth clean sheet of the season on Sunday, to take him to 199 overall in the Premier League. Now he wants to bring up the milestone on Friday night.

“A few weeks ago, I hoped that, with so many games coming up before Christmas, that the Liverpool game would be the one where I could actually get the 200th, so it’s going to plan.

“Hopefully we can get a win and obviously the clean sheet, but the win will be more important." 

Quiz

Quiz: Nine tricky questions on Mesut Ozil's 2017

Mesut Ozil

Mesut Ozil has enjoyed another impressive 12 months in an Arsenal shirt.

The Germany playmaker carried his fine 2016/17 form into this season, and has already produced some standout performances against Everton, Tottenham Hotspur and Huddersfield Town this term.

But how well have you been following Ozil over the past year? Find out by taking our quiz below:

Press conference

 ‘He’s more mature and guides the team very well’

It has not escaped Arsène Wenger’s notice that Mesut Ozil has been in the form of his Arsenal career at Emirates Stadium.

The Germany playmaker has claimed two goals and four assists in his last five home games, and the boss was asked about the 29-year-old’s growing influence and his future after his most recent match-winning performance.

on whether Mesut Ozil’s goal shows why it is so important to keep him…
Not only that, I would say more important is the quality and the influence he has on the collective game, rather than his goal. You cannot wait to score a goal like that every week, but you can play like he plays usually every week. That is more important. If he adds that to his game, it’s even more important.

on if Ozil is currently in his best run of form at Emirates Stadium…
Yes. Certainly. I think he takes responsibility and that’s what you want from him. He is more mature, he guides the team very well, he does a lot on the ball and your heart rate always goes down when he has the ball.

on whether the team would miss Mesut more than Alexis…
I wouldn’t like to compare. You want nobody to leave and see where we stand on that. But at the moment, it’s very difficult. Until the end of the season we know what he is, but after that I cannot tell you.

on playing deeper and enjoying being able to spot the runs of team-mates…
He links up the play. When you have problems to build up the game, he comes a bit deeper and Iwobi goes a bit in his position. So overall, we still have a good occupation of the pitch and we know as well that the passing starts well.

on whether the responsibility Ozil has can help to convince him to stay…
No, I believe he wants to stay. He is not to be convinced.

on if there’s a need to sit down and have a conversation with Mesut…
Let us do that and let’s not talk about it.

Interview

Ozil - The skills creative players need

Since he joined us in September 2013, no player has created as many Premier League goals as Mesut Ozil.

An integral cog in our attacking engine, the German playmaker has established himself as one of the world’s foremost No 10s - but where does his ability stem from?

“As a child, I used to enjoy just playing around and obviously to give assists,” Ozil told Arsenal Player. “Ultimately, through that, you score goals and you help your team. And that’s why I still enjoy doing that today. 

“On the pitch, whether I score goals or make assists, they’re both the same for me and that makes me happy.

“When I receive the ball in the opponent’s half, I always think offensively so I can pick out chances to score a goal or to assist someone. It’s normal that when I get the ball that I play forward. In my opinion, a creative player should have fun on the pitch and should follow his playing style to assist goals and score themselves.

“Ultimately, in my position, everything is always quite tight. The moment you receive the ball in midfield you’re already surrounded by three or four opponents who want to attack you. You just have to find the solutions quicker. So, for me, everything happens automatically. 

“How do I feel when this all comes together? Obviously very positive and happy. Ultimately, football is a team sport and every one of your team-mates wants to work hard to help the team. When everyone is linked up it makes it a lot easier and it makes you really happy.”

Interview

Lacazette - My analysis of Ozil and Alexis

With a combined 14 goals and eight assists already, Alexis, Mesut Ozil and Alexandre Lacazette are making a name for themselves as one of the Premier League’s most devastating attacking forces.

The trio have been Arsène Wenger’s first-choice frontline this season and, despite only playing together regularly since September, Lacazette already knows his team-mates’ best qualities.
 
“For Mesut, it’s about passes, his vision of the game and passes,” he told Arsenal Player. “And for Alexis, perseverance. He always wants to go further, be stronger and rise higher. As well as being very fast, he always wants go even further.
 
“I already get on very well with them in every day life. On the pitch, we’ve gotten to a point where we understand one another better, better than at the beginning. We learn more every day. But we already know how the other likes to play so it’s easier for us.
 
“The coach puts all three of us together or puts us into pairs. Then, I’m the one who has to get to know them more, rather than them as they’ve been playing together for quite a few years.
 
“It takes time to adapt. It will take days, weeks, maybe months, I don’t know. But, it’s not a problem, but I know that in time we’ll get on even better.”