Arsenal director of football Raul Sanllehi has suggested that Mesut Ozil’s absence from the squad is due to the fact that he doesn’t work hard enough in training.
Ozil, who was given a bumper new £350,000-per-week contract in the final few months of Arsene Wenger’s tenure at the Emirates Stadium, has endured a tougher relationship with the Frenchman’s successor, Unai Emery.
Ozil featured in 24 Premier League games for the Gunners last term but has only managed 142 minutes of action in all competitions this season, with Emery explaining previously that other players deserved to start ahead of the German international.
However, speaking at an Arsenal Fans’ Forum, Sanllehi shed more light on the situation and hinted that Ozil may not be working hard enough to merit a place in the squad.
“Unai’s policy has always been to play the ones that work hard in training,” the director of football is reported to have said at the meeting.
Ozil’s only action so far this term has seen the 30-year-old play 71 minutes in the 2-2 draw with Watford in the league and the same amount in Arsenal’s 5-0 win over Nottingham Forest in the EFL Cup.
Get the latest personalised Arsenal products on our new TEAMtalk Gunners shop!