Arsenal defender Nacho Monreal has accused Mesut Ozil’s critics of inventing stories about him.
The 29-year-old has endured a turbulent summer which resulted in him quitting the Germany national team citing discrimination and racism.
Ozil missed Arsenal’s 3-1 win over West Ham United a fortnight ago due to an illness, however, reports emerged stating that he had a training ground bust-up with manager Unai Emery.
The Spanish tactician refuted the claims and Ozil started for Arsenal against Cardiff on Saturday.
“People have been a bit unfair with him. He is a very famous player and obviously people love talking about him. Recently, it is always bad things. Like last time, he was sick and that’s why he didn’t play,” Monreal told the Standard.
“People started to invent that he had a problem with the manager. It wasn’t like that. He got a cold, he was sick, that’s it. That’s why he didn’t play.”
Ozil has also been criticized for his passive body language but Monreal leapt to his team-mate’s defence.
“People must understand that every player is completely different,” said the Spaniard. “He is like that [quiet] and 10 years ago he was the same. So you can’t expect on the pitch that he starts to fight, to talk with the referee because he never did it. He is not going to change in this case.
“The important thing is he plays at his highest level, gives a lot of assists, scores a lot of goals and basically helps the team. That’s what he knows. He doesn’t know how to go up to a player and grab him by the throat.”
Arsenal has registered back-to-back victories in the Premier League and will be hoping to make it three in a row when they take on Newcastle United at St James Park.
Ozil is yet to register an assist of goal for Arsenal this season but was in impressive form during their 3-2 win over Cardiff City.