Scholes: Ozil isn't even trying at Arsenal

The club-record signing has struggled to live up to his price tag at the Emirates Stadium, with the ex-Manchester United midfielder claiming the German needs a leader to thrive


Paul Scholes has criticised Mesut Ozil, claiming he is just “going through the motions” at Arsenal and his poor form is down to a lack of leaders at the Emirates Stadium.

The World Cup winner arrived in north London in the summer of 2013 for €50 million and hit the ground running with two goals and three assists in his opening five games.

However, Ozil has struggled for form and fitness since and ahead of Arsenal’s FA Cup quarter-final clash with Manchester United, the retired midfielder has believes the German international has shown a lack of ambition in joining the Gunners.

“Over the years, the big players who were really ambitious – Patrick Vieira, Thierry Henry, Cesc Fabregas, Robin van Persie – have all left,” he wrote in the Evening Standard. “They left for the simple reason that Arsenal are not in it to win league titles any more.

“Those players have realised that if they want to win championships then they have to move elsewhere. It’s why I think Mesut Ozil took the easy option joining Arsenal.

“Since he has been there you cannot doubt his quality but at times he looks like he is going through the motions, however much ground he covers.

“He needs a leader around him to get him going. At Real Madrid he had a chance of winning league titles. At Arsenal that is not on the cards.”

The former England international also believes Arsenal have lost interest in returning to the pinnacle of English football.

“It is hard when you have a recent history as successful as Arsenal were under Arsene Wenger in his first 10 years at the club. Hard in that you will always be compared to great teams of the past – as the current United team are just finding out now.

“My issue with Arsenal is that I don’t think they are striving to be like the great teams of theirs who used to battle us for the league title. They seem happy to finish fourth every year.”

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