Mesut Ozil is at such an echelon of players that he never gets benched and Arsenal has adhered to that principle over the last five years which he has been with them.
Arsenal have struggled with finding the best Mesut Ozil or, rather, let’s call it the “most consistent” Mesut Ozil. We have seen his impressive performances but consistency is another thing.
Of course, that shouldn’t be any surprise, as consistency for any player is hard to find, even someone of his caliber. The Germany national team have also struggled with this but have managed to bench the play-maker for tactical reasons as seen in the match against Sweden at the World Cup.
Ozil has a tendency of disappearing or going missing in big games, the games where the opposition have the ball more often and Arsenal need to press to get the ball back. Ozil’s defensive contributions are minimal and this has been one of the leading reasons why he is called lazy by most football pundits.
Benching players sort of motivates them or gives them hunger, that fired up feeling that the moment they get on to the pitch, they want to make a positive difference and show an impression. Ozil is talented with great control, vision enabling him to create chances in the final third. But in his mind, he knows he can’t be benched even if he puts on a lackluster performance.
I think Unai Emery should really consider benching Mesut Ozil for a couple of games, watching a match on the sidelines will stir up hunger in Ozil so that he would be reminded of who he is and what he’s abilities are. Coming from the bench with something to prove or to impress the manager and fans thus bringing him to his best. It might be possible to bench him this season because Unai Emery has shown that he has no exceptions and will remove you from the first eleven when you aren’t performing well.