Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says he was impressed by new signing Mesut Ozil after the Germany international made his debut in the club's 3-1 win over Sunderland.
The former Real Madrid man wasted no time in inspiring his new team, taking just 11 minutes to make an impact by setting up Olivier Giroud for Arsenal’s opener at the Stadium of Light. Two goals from Aaron Ramsey then sealed the victory for the Gunners, but Wenger was quick to praise Ozil, particularly as he was not at his physical best.
“It was especially good, because he was sick yesterday,” Wenger told reporters after the game. “His first half was outstanding, in the second half he dropped a bit physically, but overall it was good.”
The game was not without controversy, however, as Sunderland had a goal ruled out after referee Martin Atkinson opted to pull play back for a foul, rather than play the advantage, and Wenger admitted his side had struggled for a while.
“There were plenty of chances on both sides,” Wenger said. “We had a great first half and maybe it should be game over at halftime, but Sunderland came back with a great determination.
"We dropped a bit physically, but at 1-1 we found the resources again."
The game also saw striker Giroud substituted after picking up a knee injury, and Wenger admitted it was a concern, particularly with a Champions League encounter in Marseille next up for the Gunners.
"We are on a very strong run, but we are a bit short, because we have so many injured players and every player we lose makes it difficult," Wenger said.