Having helped his side win the FA Cup and secure Champions League qualification for next season, Arsenal’s record signing Mesut Ozil can be pleased with the outcome of the 2013-14 campaign.
However, despite a lightning start to his Premier League career, the 25-year-old’s season gradually tailed off, leading many critics to question his signing. Hastily labelled a flop by many since arriving in England, Ozil will be heading into the World Cup determined to prove his worth.
While Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger remains resolutely convinced that he will reap the rewards of the club’s considerable investment next season, Germany’s expectations of the midfielder are more immediate. Indeed, if the European giants are to prevail in Brazil, then Ozil will have to be at the very top of his game.
An almost guaranteed starter for Joachim Low’s side this summer, Ozil’s creative spark will be key to German success. It speaks volumes of the player that in a squad so rich with youth and talent, he is the man who makes them tick.
While Gunners fans could reasonably have expected more from their £42.5 million creative midfielder, much of his problems have stemmed from a lack of pace in an injury-plagued Arsenal side this season. With Theo Walcott, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Aaron Ramsey all sidelined for extended periods, the German was left without the vital willing runners on which his game is so reliant.
However, the former Real Madrid star should encounter no such problem in a German side loaded with power. With the blistering speed of Marco Reus and the canny movement of Thomas Muller on both wings, Ozil will demonstrate what has been missing from his time in England so far.
After the first taste of silverware in years, Arsenal fans will be hoping for a strong World Cup performance from their star man. With a rejuvenated Ozil in their ranks, the Gunners could well look to mount a serious title challenge next season.