- Mikel Arteta trades words with former boss Arsene Wenger over Mesut Ozil's bench-warming role
- The German midfielder has been excluded from the Gunners Europa League squad
- Arteta said it was not an easy decision for him but added that it was necessary
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has insisted that leaving Mesut Ozil out of his Europa League squad was not an easy decision.
The Spanish born tactician was named the Gunners manager last year after the sack of Unai Emery and he has gone ahead to win two titles.
He has also powered the North Londoners to the quarterfinals of this season's EFL Cup after beating Liverpool on penalties.
However, his decision to relegate the German midfielder to the bench was questioned by Arsene Wenger, who signed him from Real Madrid in 2013 for £42.5 million.
Arteta built a defence for himself saying Ozil is not the only high-ranking player missing from his squad for the continental championship which kicks off this month. He told the Mirror:
“He wasn’t the only one that is not in the squad. It was a really difficult decision for me to make because to leave players out of the squad at that level where they know that they cannot get involved is really tough.
“I don’t like it at all but the decision has to be made because we have an excess on foreign players and unfortunately we have to make that decision.
“You have to try to find a way to fit every player with their own qualities. This is our job and responsibility with all the players you have to manage.”
Wenger said while speaking to BBC Sport that leaving the midfielder out of games is nothing but a waste for the club and the player.
“I feel it is a waste for him. Firstly because he's in the years where a player of his talent can produce the most.
"And it's a waste for the club as well because he's a super talent, a creative talent that in the final third can create that killer pass.
“He's been the record player of assists, so you have to find a way to get him involved again.”
Legit.ng earlier reported that former Arsene Wenger has urged Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta to get Mesut Ozil involved in his team this season in all competitions.
The German midfielder joined the Gunners in 2013 from Real Madrid, and it was the Frenchman who was the manager then at the Emirates stadium.
A year after Mesut Ozil joined the Gunners, he went on to win the 2014 FIFA World Cup with the German senior men's national team.
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