In an interview with The Times, Mesut Ozil has opened up about his upbringing and lack of money growing up.

Mesut Ozil is reportedly the highest paid player at Arsenal Football Club. He makes more money in one week than most could hope to in a lifetime.

However, he didn’t always have it so easy.

When he was a child, his family couldn’t afford to buy him the same boots as the other children and he was mocked.

Through this, he learned the meaning of family and how important it was to him to have their support.

“They had nice brands, the best boots, but there is nothing you can do about it,” said Ozil.

“In my life, maybe I don’t have a lot of money, but I always had my family, always supporting me, so in this way I was very lucky.

“Sometimes I had to miss matches because we didn’t have a car. But my parents believed in me. They always said: ‘go for it’.”

He added, “But you can have the best boots, but that doesn’t make you the best on the pitch. I was the best player. That gave me confidence.”

Now, Ozil is one of the best footballers in the world and has been capped 83 times for Germany.

READ MORE:
Mesut Ozil: Manchester United were interested

During the course of his career, he’s assisted 189 goals and scored 89, and just continued to get better and better.

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 03: Mesut Oezil of Arsenal runs with the ball during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Arsenal at London Stadium on December 3, 2016 in London, England. (Photo by Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 03: Mesut Oezil of Arsenal runs with the ball during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Arsenal at London Stadium on December 3, 2016 in London, England. (Photo by Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images)

Ozil’s rough start in life obviously helped make him the humble, level-headed 28-year-old he is today and it’s good that he realises there’s more to life than money. Even if having some is nice.

I wonder where the people who mocked him are today… and whether they’re still laughing.