‘Scapegoat Ozil should quit German team: father

World Cup criticism of Mesut Ozil labelled ‘pathetic’ as Arsenal star is defended

Mesut Ozil is already a Gunner with Arsenal, but his father, Mustafa, wants him to be a goner with the Germany national squad, after he was made the scapegoat for their poor showing at the World Cup in Russian Federation.

Ozil was part of the Germany team that crashed out in the group stage of this summer's World Cup, four years after winning the tournament in Brazil. The 29-year-old Arsenal midfielder has received some hefty criticism for his performances and his meeting with Turkey's president Recep Erdogan.

After the World Cup, Germany team manager Olivier Bierhoff claimed Ozil's decision to meet with Erdogan and not address the issue afterwards affected the squad and even claimed he regretted calling up the Arsenal man to the World Cup squad.

"I thought: 'This isn't such a good idea.' But I didn't think: 'Uh oh, everything is collapsing now, '" he said.

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Ozil and Ilkay Gundogan, who both have Turkish roots, were booed by German fans in pre-World cup friendlies after posing for pictures with Erdogan.

The still-reigning world champions went out in the group stage in Russian Federation after a string of lacklustre performances for their earliest tournament exit in 80 years. "He has contributed a lot for this country", he said.

The fallout from Germany's disastrous World Cup campaign continues - and it could spell the end of Mesut Ozil's global career. "I can understand if he feels insulted", said the midfielder's father.

Mustapha said his son had agreed to have a photograph taken with Erdogan only out of "politeness" and that it was never meant to be a political statement.

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And he added: "The hurt has grown too strong".

Speaking to BeIN Sports, Wenger explained: 'I know Ozil well, he is a fantastic, exceptional footballer but him and [Ilkay] Gundogan suffered from what happened before the World Cup.

If we win, we win together, but if we lose, we lose because of Ozil. "But if I were in his place, I'd say - thanks a lot but that's it!" He said the team management take that feeling of alienation "very seriously".

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