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Per Mertesacker sends a message to genius former Arsenal teammate Mesut Ozil

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Mesut Ozil was left on the bench for Arsenals north London derby clash against Spurs (Picture: Getty)

Arsenal academy manager Per Mertesacker has labelled his former teammate Mesut Ozil a genius but insisted it is up to him to take his game to another level.

Ozil hasnt featured for Unai Emery this season, missing the opening game against Newcastle due to concerns over his security, before illness ruled him out against Burnley and Liverpool.

The 30-year-old was included in Arsenals matchday squad for the north London derby but failed to come on as Emery turned to fellow playmaker Dani Ceballos off the substitutes bench instead.

Ozil has shown flashes of his undoubted quality during his six-year spell with Arsenal but he has been accused by supporters of not being consistent enough with his form.

Per Mertesacker and Mesut Ozil in Arsenal training at London Colney in 2017
Per Mertesacker and Mesut Ozil were Arsenal and Germany teammates (Picture: Getty)

Asked whether he understands Arsenal fans frustrations with Ozil, Mertesacker replied: Yeah because probably they dont understand him.

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I know how to take him and how to try to pinch him when needed. But ultimately it has to come from him if he wants to go to the next level. But he can deliver.

He loves playing football, it doesnt come across so often. He is a genius in terms of what he can produce with the ball and you can see that in every training session.

He thinks he plays in the park, he can deliver that ball that no one else can deliver. He has got that magical sense.

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Ozil was a virtual ever-present during Arsene Wengers time in charge but he found himself in and out of Emerys plans during the Spaniards debut campaign in charge.

Emery frequently benched Ozil last term and he only managed five goals and two assists from 24 Premier League matches, the latter statistic representing his worst return in English football.

Mertesacker was a long-term teammate of Ozils both for Arsenal and at international level with Germany and he admitted tRead More – Source