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Wenger: Ignore the body language, this player works hard for Arsenal

By Emma Sanders

Arsene Wenger revealed Mesut Ozil “suffered” against Manchester City when the Gunners didn’t have the ball.

The midfielder came under huge criticism for his performance against their league rivals last week and supporters claimed Ozil was not putting in enough effort.

Ozil is one of the best players in the Premier League and has excellent quality on the ball but Wenger admitted he struggled when having to regain possession.

The Arsenal manager did defend Ozil, saying he does put in effort, but says his body language doesn’t suggest he is working during games.

“His main strengths are when he has the ball. He suffers more when we don’t have the ball. He suffered more than others at City,” said Wenger in his latest press conference, as reported by The Evening Standard.

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“Unfortunately, if you want the ball you have to win it back. He is a guy who works harder than people think – his body language goes against him.”

The German has been criticised throughout his Arsenal career after making the switch in September 2013 for £42.5 million from Real Madrid.

The midfielder is still one of their star players but he has been accused of shying away in big games and the latest performance against Manchester City infuriated supporters.

Pundit Stan Collymore also launched an attack on Ozil after the City game, labelling him a “flat-track bully”.

So far this season, Ozil has scored five goals in 16 Premier League appearances and has added a further four goals in the Champions League, including a sensational hat-trick against Ludogorets.

Arsenal currently sit in fourth place in the league table but are just one point ahead of Tottenham after two defeats against City and Everton prior to the festive period.

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