Germany general manager Oliver Bierhoff has defended Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil, saying he was “let down by his team” in the 5-1 Champions League rout at Bayern Munich.
Germany international Ozil was heavily criticised following the game at the Allianz Arena last month, with some accusing him of lacking influence in big matches.
But speaking to Sport Bild, Bierhoff said: “If I look at Mesut Ozil, who was singled out following the 5-1 loss to Bayern… in that match there wasn’t much support for a player like Mesut, who lives on his footballing qualities.
“The team let him down a bit.”
Bierhoff contrasted Ozil’s situation with that of Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Julian Draxler, who has revitalised his form with the French champions after leaving Wolfsburg.
“He [Draxler] has got very good footballers around him. That helps him,” he said.
Ozil, 28, joined Arsenal from Real Madrid for a club-record £42.4 million but has yet to agree a contract extension, with his current deal expiring next year.
Last week, Ozil was defended by agent Dr Erkut Sogut, who told BBC that “criticism is normal if a player plays badly, but Mesut feels people are not focusing on his performance — they are using him as a scapegoat for the team after bad results.”