Per Mertesacker was impressed with how Mesut Özil shone at the weekend against Everton.
Özil put in a man-of-the-match performance as the Gunners won 5-2 on Sunday. The showing at Goodison Park didn’t go unnoticed by captain Per Mertesacker, who praised his fellow Germany teammate in his pre-Norwich City programme notes, reports the Daily Star.
“People talk about the way Mesut creates chances, which he did brilliantly against Everton, but I was equally impressed with his high intensity runs. His combination play has always been strong and on Sunday you felt like he was never going to lose the bal,” said Mertesacker.
“He made himself available in-between the lines and combined very well with the other lads. When he’s at that level, when he makes those high intensity runs, he’s so difficult to defend against. We made him shine because we gave him the ball in the right areas. He took advantage of that.”
I think Mertesacker is right to highlight that there are two sides to a good performance like Ozil’s at the weekend. On the one hand, you have to give a lot of credit to the German.
His chance-creation was on another level – no Premier League player has matched his eight chances created in a single game this season – and he added an impressive headed goal to top things off.
On the other hand, Özil can only shine if his teammates put in some of the work as well. His eight chances created would be pointless if no one finished any of them, and he couldn’t head home the goal to put the Gunners in front if no one spotted his run into the box.
With Arsenal playing the way they did at the weekend, the 29-year-old had the platform to seize the game and help win the three points. Hopefully this weekend there will be the same sorts of performances all round again, against Swansea.