Arsenal manager Unai Emery has stressed that Mesut Ozil remains a ‘very important’ player for the Gunners and he is prepared to German’s form under his management next season. The 29-year-old had a relatively mixed 2017/18 campaign with the Gunners where they finished sixth in the Premier League and he was thereafter involved with Germany at the World Cup where they suffered a shock group-stage exit.
Speaking in a news conference, Emery admitted that the entire team suffered from a dip in form last term and it is up to him to get the best out of the players including Ozil, he said: “I want to work with him [Ozil] with a new way and with an ambition to continue with this quality and help with this quality, getting better with the team.I think last year was a difficult year for all, not only for Mesut. I think it is for the team. They finished sixth in the Premier League - not the position we want.”
Ozil had yet to report for pre-season training but based of the timescale, he could report to Emery before the team head for Singapore for the International Champions Cup games versus Atletico Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain. Prior to that, however, Emery has the opportunity to manage his first friendly game against Boreham Wood at Meadow Park and the game is certain to attract interest with the Spaniard expected to field a strong squad.
The likes of Aaron Ramsey, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, and Henrikh Mkhitaryan have been involved in the preparation for the friendly and their National League opponents could witness a tough game, should the Gunner get going from the off. Summer signing Sokratis Papastathopoulos should play some part during the game though Bernd Leno may not feature after reporting a week late for training.