Ozil goes missing too often, says Salihamidzic

The former Bosnia-Herzegovina star has urged the Arsenal star to step up at difficult moments and feels the current Bayern Munich cannot be compared to Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona

By Christoph Kockeis

Former Bayern Munich midfielder Hasan Salihamidzic has criticised Arsenal star Mesut Ozil for “going missing” in big games –  but insists the Germany international has the potential to become one of the best in the world.

The former Real Madrid midfielder has received his fair share of criticism in recent months in the wake of a number of poor performances, most recently against Bayern Munich in the 2-0 defeat at the Emirates.

However, he impressed in Arsenal’s 4-1 FA Cup win over Everton at the weekend, and Salihamidzic has now urged Ozil to step up his game even on bad days.

“It is a big challenge for Ozil to banish this inconsistency from his game. He can be a genius on a lot of moments – and that’s why he played for Real Madrid before – but I cannot explain why he goes missing this often,” the 37-year-old told Goal.

“Mesut has to learn to explode even on bad days and not go down with the rest of his team when the going gets tough.

“Each player has his own character, but that’s what superstars do. Only by achieving this can he become one of the best in the world and he has the potential to do just that.”

Salihamidzic, who wore the Bayern Munich jersey from 1998 until 2007, believes the current side cannot be compared to Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona as they do not depend on one central figurehead in the same way as the Blaugrana rely on Lionel Messi.

“Bayern already were a great team. Making the Champions League final that often is something special and is the result of their philosophy,” said the former Bosnia-Herzegovina international.

“Guardiola has made some changes and has done so successfully. He has made a few tactical changes and they look very flexible. They are a bit similar to Barcelona in this aspect of the game.

“You could see many things in them too, but in the end, it was Messi who dominated. Things are different at Bayern. The team is much more balanced and does not rely on just one player.

“You either love Bayern or you hate them. They have created something perfect – everything fits. They are a power in global football.”

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