Report: Mesut Ozil needs to fight for his place, says Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger

Ozil Arsenal 1

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says that Santi Cazorla’s form means that Mesut Ozil is not guaranteed a place in the starting line-up.

The Sun quotes Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger as saying that Mesut Ozil faces competition for his place in the starting line-up.

Germany international playmaker Ozil made a long-awaited comeback from injury on Sunday when he came on as a second-half substitute against Stoke City at the Emirates Stadium.

The 26-year-old played the final 17 minutes of the Premier League encounter which ended in a comfortable 3-0 home win for the Gunners.

Ozil gave a decent account of himself against Stoke, having one shot and a 91% pass accuracy, but Wenger has said that the 2014 World Cup winner cannot expect to just walk into the team.

“Ozil is an exceptional football player who always gives you continuity in your game,” The Sun quotes the Frenchman as saying. “It has been a frustrating season for him because he has not contributed yet.

“It was not a convincing start for him. He played six games and scored one goal against Aston Villa. Now the opportunity is there for him to come back into the team and contribute.

“It is not going to be easy for him because Santi Cazorla is playing very well and Mesut faces a fight to get back to his best level."

Ozil was severely criticised for his performances when he was fit, although one needs to remember that he was largely played out on the wing by Wenger.

Having been out for three months with a serious knee injury, the former Real Madrid star will need some time to get into the groove of things.

However, given the undoubted quality that the former Werder Bremen star has, he will certainly be expected by Arsenal fans to re-establish himself in the starting line-up sooner rather than later.

It is also encouraging to see Wenger praise Spain international midfielder Santi Cazorla for his performances of late.

The 30-year-old former Malaga star is not always acknowledged for his contribution to the team, but he remains an important part of the side.

In 20 Premier League appearances so far this season, Cazorla has scored four goals and created 47 chances, while having a pass accuracy of 88% and a shot accuracy of 54%, and winning 59% of the duels.

The competition that Cazorla will now face from Ozil is only going to be good for Arsenal.

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