Football Football

Settled Ozil happy to be a Gooner

Mesut Ozil celebrates a goal against Liverpool. PHOTO/File
Mesut Ozil celebrates a goal against Liverpool. PHOTO/File

LONDON, June 18- Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil has ruled out the possibility of departing the London club in the off-season, saying he is settled at the Emirates.

The 26-year-old has in the past faced a barrage of criticism for a perceived lack of effort, but won over a number of his critics with a string of impressive performances towards the end of the 2014/15 Premier League campaign.

The Germany international’s future was called into question following an underwhelming debut season in English football, but has not had to contend with a similar situation this time around.

And Ozil says the faith of manager Arsene Wenger and support of his Gunners teammates helped him acclimatise to life in England.

“I always felt comfortable here,” Ozil told Arsenal’s official website.

“Yes, there were times when it was really difficult for me but now everything is going very well.

“The team are successful and I feel so at home here because of the way in which I was received by the whole squad.

“The boss helps me a lot too because he gives me his trust and that helps me to feel happy at Arsenal as well.”

Looking back on his first season in England and a gruelling World Cup campaign with Germany, he added: “In my first season, not having a winter break meant that I could notice my body becoming tired.

“I had the World Cup after my first season here.

“It was such a great time but when I came back, the fitness coach said that even though I felt fit, the freshness was missing.

“I continued to give everything to help the team and that’s how I got my injury.

“That was a really bitter time because I missed football but it’s an experience you have to go through as a player.

“My aim was always to come back stronger and thanks to God, everything worked out.”