Arsenal star Mesut Ozil Photo: Mesut Ozil / Instagram
Arsene Wenger believes Mesut Ozil’s fighting spirit is a result of the Arsenal midfielder’s growing maturity.
The Germany international was heavily criticised at the start of the Premier League season following an injury-hit start to the campaign.
The Arsenal midfielder was a surprise absentee for the north London side’s goalless draw with defending champions Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.
His performances in a 4-0 loss to Liverpool and a 3-1 defeat at Manchester City attracted criticism with some questioning his work ethic.
However, Ozil made two assists and scored one goal in three second-half minutes in a 5-0 win over Huddersfield Town at The Emirates on Wednesday night.
The Gunners midfielder has scored two goals and has made five assists in his last five Premier League outings to find some top form.
Ozil is set to become a free agent next summer unless Arsenal can convince the German star to put pen to paper on a new contract before the end of the 2017-18 season.
Manchester United have been linked with a move to sign the attacking midfielder, which some might suggest is the reason for Ozil’s new-found desire.
However, Arsenal boss Wenger credited Ozil’s fighting spirit as a result of the 29-year-old growing maturity at The Emirates.
“Our job is to encourage people to fight of course, but I think that he always covered the distances in the game, but he is at an age where he is mature and he understands what is important, what is less important,” Wenger said.
Ozil has won the FA Cup three times in the past four seasons following his 42.5m move to Arsenal from La Liga giants Real Madrid in the 2013 summer transfer window.
The German star has scored two goals and has made five assists in 11 appearances in the Premier League this term.