Bayern Munich coach Pep Guardiola described Arsenal playmaker Mesut Ozil as ’the dangerous one’ before the two sides’ Champions League last-16 second-leg tie last season.
German champions Bayern had won the first leg of the tie 2-0 against the Gunners at the Emirates Stadium in London on February 19.
Second-half goals from Toni Kroos and Thomas Muller saw the Bundesliga outfit take a commanding lead against Arsenal and virtually secure a place in the quarter-finals of Europe’s premier club competition.
However, Bayern coach Guardiola did not become complacent ahead of the second leg at the Allianz Arena in Munich on March 11 and told his players to ‘keep the closest eye’ on Ozil.
‘[Mesut] Ozil is the dangerous one – he’s the one we really need to keep the closest eye on’, Guardiola is quoted as saying during a team talk in the book Pep Confidential: Inside Guardiola's First Season at Bayern Munich.
‘[Mikel] Arteta draws you in, Ozil pops up in that zone with [Santi] Cazorla and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain around him and that’s the way that they achieve superiority in a key area. We can’t afford that to happen’.
Bayern failed to win the second leg, but a 1-1 draw in Munich was more than enough for the Bavarian giants to progress to the quarter-finals of the Champions League.