Jens Lehmann believes that Shkodran Mustafi and Mesut Ozil owe Arsene Wenger a huge performance against Manchester City.
The ex-Arsenal goalkeeper has been vocal recently about how he believes Wenger should remain in north London despite his contract running out in the summer. Now, he’s spoken up about Ozil and Mustafi and how they need to ask themselves if they’re really doing enough for the team.
“You must be a big player mentally,” Lehmann said.
“There’s always a question with Ozil, how much can he contribute when it gets tough?
“It’s not Mustafi’s fault someone has paid £35m for him. If someone buys me for £35m, the next day I’m not a better player.
“He is giving everything. But sometimes the team concede five, so he has to ask himself if it’s good enough?”
He went on, “All these guys when they came to Arsenal were happy to join. They should not forget that.
“They can’t just turn around and say, ‘The manager is c**p — it’s his responsibility’.
“That’s not possible if you have character. They’re good players, they have character but they need to show it.
“I haven’t seen Arsene criticise them. It’s payback. Their next game against Manchester City is a good occasion to do that. They owe him.”
Arsenal face Manchester City at the Emirates after the international break and considering a 2-1 loss at the Etihad flattered the Gunners during the corresponding fixture, most Gooners are probably already prepared for a thrashing on their own turf.
While Wenger is often unfairly labeled as tight-fisted, the club did fork out over £77m for both Ozil and Mustafi, so it’s not unreasonable to suggest they pull their socks up for the big games. However, while Mustafi is likely to feature, Ozil missed out on Germany’s international friendly against England on Wednesday night with a tight hamstring.