Everton 2-1 Arsenal: Mikel Arteta 'gutted' with result
Mikel Arteta recalling Mesut Ozil could ruin his credibility within the Arsenal squad. That’s the view of Graeme Souness, who believes bringing the German back on his ‘own terms’ is not a good policy.
The World Cup winner has been nothing more than a spectator this season, with Arteta opting to leave him out of his Premier League and Europa League squads.
Ozil is the highest paid player at the club, but the Gunners boss has deemed him surplus to requirements.
The player himself has consistently claimed he is desperate to return to the fold, with his contract at the Emirates expiring at the end of the season.
Defeat to Everton on Saturday, piles more pressure, not only on Arteta’s job prospects, but also to bring back the playmaker in January.
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The Spaniard will be given the opportunity to name Ozil in his squads for the second half of the season, with Souness claiming Arsenal bosses will be looking at the situation closely.
“If you bring him back now, he’s coming back on his terms,” Souness told Sky Sports.
“He’s got a big decision and you can bet he’ll run that by the directors, ‘look we’re paying him whatever we’re paying him, I’m going to park him up’.
“As long he’s sitting there out of the team doing nothing his value is going down and you’re still paying big money.
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“So you’ve got a diminishing asset. They’ve obviously given the green light to do that, putting trust in their manager.
“Yeah they will be looking at that situation without a shadow of a doubt. People will be questioning that decision now.”
Arsenal sit just four points ahead of Burnley, who currently occupy the final spot in the relegation zone – although the Clarets have paid two games less.
And with scrutiny over his job increasing, Souness believes an Ozil recall could harm his standing amongst his players even more.
“Do they bring him back? It takes some real man management to comeback,” he added.
“This is a guy who’s involved in his very first job in management. This would be a difficult job for an experienced manager.
“He’s got it all on to try and manage that and come out of it with his face.
“I’m not sure. The player coming back on his terms is never good.
“I think it diminishes his [Arteta’s] credibility with some of the players in the dressing room. They could use that against him.”
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