Unai Emery says he’s leaving Mesut Ozil out because other players in the squad deserve to be there more than he does.

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 03: Unai Emery, Manager of Arsenal reacts during the UEFA Europa League group F match between Arsenal FC and Standard Liege at Emirates Stadium on October 03, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND – OCTOBER 03: Unai Emery, Manager of Arsenal reacts during the UEFA Europa League group F match between Arsenal FC and Standard Liege at Emirates Stadium on October 03, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

Up until now, Unai Emery’s responses about his continual Mesut Ozil dissing have been bland and told us little. Speaking after Arsenal’s 4-0 win over Standard Liege on Thursday however, he grew a bit of a spine and said it how it is.

Sort off.

“I am thinking every time to decide the best players for each match and the best players in the squad to play and to help us,” Emery said when asked why Ozil wasn’t in the squad. “When I decided he shouldn’t be in the squad, it’s because I think other players deserved it more.”

So, a player who doesn’t get a chance to play, but who is apparently so important to the team he’s one of the five captains, doesn’t deserve a spot as much as others?

I don’t know what is going on in training but I do know against Standard Liege there was absolutely no need to bring on Matteo Guendouzi or Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang given their importance to the first team and the fact the match was safe.

I call bullsh*t on Emery thinking they ‘deserved’ to be there, despite needing rest, ahead of Ozil.

Only Emile Smith Rowe has played fewer minutes this season than our highest earner from the first-team squad.

Aubameyang, meanwhile, has played more minutes than any other player while Guendouzi is fifth on that list behind Bernd Leno, Sokratis and David Luiz, two of whom were rested completely on Thursday night while Leno sat on the bench.

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Writer. Feminist. Dreamer. Gooner. Owner of DailyCannon.com, writing about Arsenal since 2008. Sometimes found in the Guardian, Vice.com & elsewhere talking queer issues, politics & football. If in doubt, assume sarcasm.