Arsenal head coach Unai Emery demands more from Mesut Ozil ahead of Newcastle United clash

Arsenal head coach Unai Emery on the touchline during the Premier League match at the Emirates Stadi

Arsenal head coach Unai Emery on the touchline during the Premier League match at the Emirates Stadium, London. PA - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

Arsenal head coach Unai Emery has asked creative talent Mesut Ozil for more influential performances when he pulls on the red and white shirt.

Arsenal head coach Unai Emery. PA

Arsenal head coach Unai Emery. PA - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

The playmaker has been criticised by many outside the club for ‘disappearing’ during matches, ahead of the Gunners trip to Newcastle.

Ozil, has long attracted flack by outsiders for his workrate and impact on games with the German missing the 3-1 win over West Ham last month through illness as reports of a training ground bust-up with Emery were alleged – which the Emirates supremo flatly denied.

Ozil, who earns £350,000 a week, making him Arsenal’s highest paid player, returned for the entertaining 3-2 victory at Cardiff, showing glimpses of his skill and vision when feeding Alexandre Lacazette prior to his goal.

Arsenal have collected six points in their past three away Premier League games (W2, L1), as many as in their previous 11 away games combined (W1 D3 L7).


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However, the former PSG boss is demanding more from the 29-year-old talisman – who has never played a match at St James’ Park.

“I want to find with him the possibility to do the best, to make decisive passes, to do more near and in the box to score,” Emery said.

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“He is working for the team to help us with his quality. But he is feeling like I am feeling.

“He can improve, he can do more. We will work, we will help him, give him the possibility on the pitch to be together, to find his qualities for us.”

Emery added: “I want to push them, I want to be demanding to prepare for this match – Mesut the same.”

Ozil spent the international break training at London Colney after retiring from the German international side amid accusations of racism that he levelled at bigwigs in the country’s FA.

Emery insisted the Gelsenkirchen-born midfielder has been working hard, adding the pair have a good working relationship.

“He could feel different but every day with us I look at him and he looks well and happy, working with our demands,” he said.

“He had a relaxing three days off at the weekend. Mesut works very well here. I look at him with the focus totally here. I have a very good relationship with Mesut and professionally I push him for improvements to give us the best in his qualities and performances.”

Follow Arsenal reporter Layth on Twitter @laythy29 from St James’ Park on Saturday

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