Although there’s no football on currently due to the coronavirus crisis, Sky Sports pundit Graeme Souness has picked out Arsenal’s Mesut Ozil for some criticism.
The outspoken panelist is never shy in sharing his thoughts on a player, particularly if they are negative, and he focused on Arsenal’s playmaker in this segment on Sky Sports.
As seen in the video below, the conversation revolved around whether or not the 31-year-old has fulfilled his potential given how talented he is.
While his World Cup triumph with Germany will be the biggest highlight of his career, he has had intermittent success with Arsenal, but question marks seemingly remain.
Jamie Redknapp and Alan Smith both admitted that they although Ozil has enjoyed a great career to date, there will be frustration too.
However, Souness was critical in terms of the German playmaker’s lack of effort in his defensive work, particularly his observation over the lack of desire to get back and defend when giving the ball away.
“The way I see him, we should not even be having a conversation about him,” he said, as per the video below. “He’s so talented, and we should be talking about him as one of the greatest players to come to the Premier League, but I don’t think I’m alone in feeling there’s so much more from him.
“I know Ozil is a No 10, but when he loses the ball, there’s a general disinterest to do the hard yards. He’s not alone in that, and maybe he’s given carte blanche to be like that but if you’re out there and you give the ball away yourself, the first reaction has to be to sprint back, get goal-side and be part of the team that wins the ball back.”
It’s a debate that will no doubt split opinion, but particularly earlier in his career, Ozil was a joy to watch on a regular basis for both club and country, and while he’ll hope he is far from done at this stage, time is running out for him to achieve more and showcase his talent at the highest level.
?"When you watch him do you think he puts a shift in?"
Graeme Souness on Mesut Ozil fulfilling his potential pic.twitter.com/KrFN0sUyVA
— Football Daily (@footballdaily) March 30, 2020