Mesut Ozil reaffirmed his support for Arsenal with a message on Twitter ahead of their Europa League 2-1 win over Rapid Vienna on Thursday.
Ozil did not travel with the squad to the Austrian capital after Mikel Arteta left him out of his squad for the competition. Soon after, Ozil was also dropped from the Gunners’ 25-man Premier League squad.
The former Germany international went public with his disappointment after being left out, commenting that “loyalty is hard to come by” in football. Ozil has played more than 250 times for Arsenal since joining in 2013, but hasn’t featured at all since English football returned from coronavirus lockdown.
Nevertheless, Ozil was keen to point out he would still be supporting his team-mates from home.
He posted on Twitter: “When I can't support on the pitch tonight, I will support in front of the TV in London. What are your predictions for the match? I go for a 4-1 away victory.” Ozil tagged Sead Kolasinac, Mohamed Elneny and Alexandre Lacazette in the tweet, saying they and Nicolas Pepe would score Arsenal’s goals in Vienna.
When I can't support on the pitch tonight, I will support in front of the TV in London. What are your predictions for the match? I go for a 4-1 away victory 🔴💪🏼 goalscorers @seadk6, @ElNennY, @LacazetteAlex & Pepe😉#UEL #YaGunnersYa— Mesut Özil (@MesutOzil1088) October 22, 2020
Ozil continued tweeting throughout the game, congratulating former team-mate Petr Cech on his unexpected return to Chelsea's squad and cheering on Arsenal's win.
Ozil now appears to be staring down the barrel of an anticlimactic exit from north London, though it remains to be seen which clubs would be willing to take on his expected huge wage demands.
“Everybody is free to express his feelings,” Arteta said. “What I can say from my side is it’s just a football decision, that my conscience is very calm because I’ve been really fair with him.
“My level of communication with him has been really high and we know what to expect with each other.
“He has had the opportunities like everybody else. I am sad that I had to leave three players out of this list, which is never pleasant, but I just have to say that I tried to look everybody in the eye and be comfortable with it.
“With Mesut, I have this feeling because I have been very straightforward since I arrived at this club."