‘Ozil is an easy target’ – Arsenal legend reacts to wage cut controversy

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 05: Mesut Ozil of Arsenal runs with the ball during the Premier League match between Arsenal FC and Brighton & Hove Albion at Emirates Stadium on December 05, 2019 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

Arsenal legend Emmanuel Petit has given his reaction to the wage cut controversy at his former club.

According to reports, Mesut Ozil is allegedly among three members of the Arsenal squad that have refused to accept a 12.5 percent wage cut on their salaries through the coronavirus disruptions.

Petit made it clear that he thinks Ozil is an easy target and highlighted the fact that the playmaker of Turkish origin is involved in many charitable projects.

READ: The Secret Life Of Arsenal Star Mesut Ozil

Petit said: “Ozil is an easy target. For the last few years, he has always been targeted for the same reason — for the poor performances on the pitch and the fact he is earning so much money.

“But I understand he is doing a lot of things for charity and providing a lot of things for kids and communities as well.

“A lot of players are doing a lot of things through their foundations and carrying out charitable acts, and just because the coronavirus is hitting all of us, it doesn’t mean those players aren’t doing other things to help out people.”

Ozil does a lot of work for charities through the Big Shoe project which funds surgery for kids who cannot afford it across the world.

He also invites disable kids and their families to his Emirates box at every home game.

Petit did, however, reveal that he understands why some people will have questions if Ozil has refused the pay cut.

“I have seen from Mesut that a lot of things have been done for charity over the past few years and we can thank him for that,” he added.

“But on top of that, when you see the big reaction when he doesn’t want to take a pay cut on 12.5 percent of his wages, a lot of people don’t understand that.”

The 31-year-old is the highest-paid player in the Arsenal squad earning approximately £350,000 a-week.