Arsenal manager Unai Emery has revealed what the out of favour Mesut Ozil must do in order to regain his spot in the line-up.
The 30-year-old has struggled to insert himself into Emery’s plans at Arsenal this season after previously being an undisputed starter under former coach Arsene Wenger.
Following the loss of Alexis Sanchez to Manchester United in January 2018, Arsenal resorted to great measures to ensure they would not bid goodbye to another star asset by tying down Ozil to a new contract until June 2021 with a weekly wage of £350,000.
Despite now being comfortably the Gunners’ highest earner, however, Ozil has been struggling for a lack of form along with minor injuries and illnesses ever since.
Arsenal legend Emmanuel Petit believes the former Germany international has “lost it” and is nothing more than a “ghost”, which he believes has forced Emery into dropping him this season.
This has prompted concerns over Ozil’s long-term future at the Emirates Stadium amid reports linking him with a switch to Inter Milan.
Even Wenger has now come out and suggested that the reason behind Ozil’s troubles may have come down to the lucrative deal he received last year, which has left him in a “comfort zone”.
Speaking ahead to Arsenal’s return leg against BATE Borisov in their Round of 32 clash in the Europa League on Thursday, Emery revealed exactly what Ozil must now do to regain his place in the team.
“Mostly, the key is his hand and he is working very well this week and I ask him in our conversations to be consistent, to be available for us training, when you can train with quality and consistency, it can help us with the best performance after in the games,” said Emery on Arsenal.com.
“Now, this week is good for all the players, because we are in a big, important moment for the season and I look at him doing the training like we want.
“I know he wants, but we need to be consistent and available in training and the matches without the injuries and without being sick. Like that, we can find and see the best Mesut with us.”
Arsenal, who are currently 1-0 down on aggregate from last week’s shock first leg defeat at Belarus, will host BATE at the Emirates on Thursday with kick-off set for 6:55 PM (CET).
Mesut Ozil holds the key to his Arsenal future, says Unai Emery 🔑 pic.twitter.com/mc8lfSQz25
— Goal (@goal) February 20, 2019