By Will Butcher
Alan Smith believes Tottenham’s Dele Alli is a better option than Arsenal’s Mesut Ozil in the number 10 role on current form.
Former Gunners striker Smith picked a combined side consisting of the best England and Germany players, ahead of their friendly on Wednesday evening.
Smith claimed on the Sky Sports website that Alli was his preferred choice in the number 10 role, as Ozil’s current form is not good enough to see him make the side.
Alli, 20, was picked alongside teammate Kyle Walker as well as the likes of Mats Hummels, Thomas Muller and Raheem Sterling.
“He’s a fantastic talent,” Smith said. “He’s full of goals and energy.
“It may surprise some that I’ve picked him ahead of Mesut Ozil but, on current form, Ozil simply doesn’t deserve to make the team.”
Former Real Madrid ace Ozil’s form has coincided with Arsenal’s dismal recent results, which has seen them lose six of their last nine league and cup outings.
In contrast, Alli took his goalscoring tally to 17 in all competitions on the weekend, as he won a penalty against Southampton before stepping up to score and earn a 2-1 Spurs victory.
Alli’s sublime form, which has seen him also provide eight assists during his 39 appearances this season, has eclipsed that of Ozil.
Arsenal’s number eight has managed just nine goals of his own, and has failed to score for the Gunners in his last 11 matches.
The duo are likely to go up against each other for the first time this season on Wednesday, after Alli missed the 1-1 draw between the north London giants back in November with a knee injury.
Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate will be hoping to build on their 3-2 victory last time out against the Germans, which saw Eric Dier, Harry Kane and Jamie Vardy all find the net.