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'Ozil is happy at Arsenal' - Former Gunners midfielder sees no indication of exit thoughts

9:33 AM GMT 28/02/2019
Mesut Ozil, Arsenal
The German playmaker continues to spark talk of a summer transfer, but David Hillier believes the player and his manager are working well together

Mesut Ozil is “really happy” at Arsenal, Unai Emery and his coaching staff are satisfied with him and there is no sign of a summer move being planned, says David Hillier.

Speculation continues to swirl around the German playmaker in what has been a testing 2018-19 campaign.

The World Cup winner started the season expected to play a leading role under new manager Unai Emery, but has slowly slipped down the pecking order.

That has led to rumours regarding a switch elsewhere, with it suggested that 30-year-old will want to find somewhere that can offer him more regular first-team football.

Ozil was, however, back in the Arsenal side and among the goals in a 5-1 mauling of Bournemouth on Wednesday and is considered to merely need more minutes in which to rediscover full fitness and his most creative spark for a club that still values him highly on a lucrative contract.

Former Gunners midfielder Hillier told the Chronicles of a Gooner podcast: “I don’t understand how the situation’s got to this stage.

“First of all, I’ll say that Mesut Ozil, if you are privy to some of the videos and the training ground stuff that I see, the way that he is with the lads and the way that he conducts himself - it’s like none of this is happening to him.

“He’s really happy and all the players are happy with him and the staff and the managers are all happy with him.

“I don’t think there’s an issue with Mesut’s game. I think the issue is when he’s left out of the side so many times, he then starts to lose his consistent level he was playing at.

“So every time he comes back into the side, like coming back into the side [off the bench against Southampton], whenever he gets on the pitch he’s expected to do something so special to warrant a place in the side the next game.

“He can’t say: ‘I’ve played the last 12 games, I’ve had eight good, three average and one bad.’ He hasn’t got that in the locker, so he’s putting himself under pressure every time.

“It’s not just him putting himself under pressure. The crowd are putting him under pressure, the manager, his players around him. All inadvertently because they want him to do so well.”

Ozil’s next outing for Arsenal could come in a crucial contest as part of their ongoing bid for a top-four finish, with the Gunners due at Wembley on Saturday for a north London derby date with Tottenham.