Wenger tips Ozil for future Ballon d’Or challenge


Arsene Wenger doesn’t rate Mesut Ozil’s chances of winning the World Player of the Year when the results are announced in January but believes his new signing can challenge for football’s top honour in the future.

The German midfielder was the only current Arsenal player to make FIFA’s 23-man shortlist, albeit for his exploits in a Real Madrid shirt, but remains a rank outsider for an award which Lionel Messi has won every year since the format was revised in 2010.

With the likes of Ronaldo and Champions League winner Franck Ribery also strong contenders this year Arsene Wenger says it was unlikely his charge will walk away with the Ballon d’Or despite his obvious talent.

“Ozil is not one of the favourites this year, but in the future he can win it,” the boss told press ahead of tonight’s game with Borussia Dortmund.

“[He has brought] technical quality, vision and his absolute desire to play collectively in a very strong way.

“He is a player who has only one master, that is football. He does what the game demands, his ego does not stand in the way of his game, all the great players have that.”

Also speaking in yesterday’s pre-match press conference, Olivier Giroud touched on his development as a player.

Reflecting on his accession to the top of the European game, the French international, who spent the first five years of his career scrapping at the likes of Grenoble, Tours and Istre before moving to Montpellier, said doubts about his ability helped motivate his improvement.

“It was a long time ago – I was really young, [around] 19. I was maybe not mature enough,” Giroud said.

“I grew up step by step and proved that I could score a lots of goals and did well. I improved myself and had the trust and confidence to continue.

“I succeeded in Ligue 1 and won the championship. Everything I did on the pitch is my answer for people who wanted to maybe blame me.

“I tried to do my job on the pitch and score goals. Never mind the people who did not believe in my qualities and my game. I don’t care about it now.”

Given the great Thierry Henry couldn’t persuade the football fraternity that he was good enough to be feted Europe’s best player (Pavel Nedved & Michael Owen…really?), let alone the world’s, it seems somewhat unlikely that any Arsenal player in the near future will secure such personal accolades. It’s not a big deal, the way we play these days we’re much more about the collective rather than individual.

Of course when it comes to handsomeness, well Olivier wins hand down…


    • Criteria for ballon’dor

      ▶Do not spend more than 5 minutes on the mirror.
      ▶ Do not spend too much time with your hair stylist.
      ▶ Hope to Bergkamp Sepp blatter likes you….

      and most importantly
      ▶Be messi.

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    • Well he has the benefit of not being English. I know Platini and friends are aware that Wales is a different country to England. They’d like nothing more than to force us to have only one FA for the entire UK so that we would have less influence in Europe than we have now. Actually, now that I think about it, that’s probably a reason they will not let him win the Ballon d’or no matter how good he becomes. UEFA bastards.

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  1. Wenger’s comments on Ozil are interesting. Very similar to ones in Bergkamp’s book about top players being motivated by providing a service to the game of football and not as a means to fuel their ego.

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  2. I like how Wenger has developed a soft spot for Özil, seems really chuffed about the team and the players this season 🙂

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    • He did very well for Real last season but maybe it’s just me our opponents tonight had a magnificent season last season putting Real to the sword in both knockout and group stage. Yet they only have 1 player in 23. Barcelona and Real both stuffed in the semi finals yet they both have a hat full. The reason Henry didn’t win it is because Arsenal are not glamorous enough for them. Bunch of tossers.

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  3. i think the best part about all of this is not what ozil could win and what not but more the player he is going to become at arsenal, wenger is a master at creating players so whats amazing is what wenger is going to do with a young world class midfielder, ozil is already top quality, how good is ozil guna get?????

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  4. wenger is merely laying the psychological foundation to ozil, he did the same with rvp. i dont know if anyone remembers wenger saying a few years back RVP will soon be in the messi, ronaldo, rooney and co category. what this does is imprint into the players mind how far they can go, wenger is a psychologist, and theres more to it than wenger can see in ozil, Wenger is building him

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  5. You all know that Gareth Bale will be in the top 3 right… his transfer fee alone will ensure that.
    so i guess the only solace arsenal fans will get when messi wins is that Ronaldo and Bale will both cry… and ruin their mascara / faecal face smear

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  6. Sorry Blogs but Nedved killed that year not to mention his Swayze like charm……….Micky Owen on the other hand.

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  7. OZIL! Wherver you may be,
    Your eyes pop out ‘cus you can hardly believe,
    Forty for you, and you never bite
    Eighty to the SH*T even though he’s sh*te!

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  8. I fucking love Özil and I fucking love Wenger and I fucking love Arsenal. Goddammit I am so fucking happy. I also fucking love Ramsey. I love everyone.

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  9. have to pull you up on this Blogs

    Nedved was a beast for Juve for many seasons and was a worthy winner and nice to see that recognised at the time rather than the obvious choices like it is now where it is only going to be between the four obvious choices.

    Owen on the other hand yes you are quite right

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  10. “He is a player who has only one master, that is football. He does what the game demands, his ego does not stand in the way of his game, all the great players have that.”

    Wenger has this right, and it is exactly the reason why Bale will never be a great player, no matter how much some Spanish nutter wants to pay for him.

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  11. I love Özil too. He just needs to be more consistent in order to be a real Ballon d’Or candidate. Hope Arsene can improve him to such a level.

    That said, Kroos is my favorite german midfielder by far. More pressing resistant, calmer on the ball and just as good a passer. He can also play every midfield position without quality loss.

    Only things Özil is ahead of him are pace, dribbling and experience.. Mesut would be great for a team like Dortmund, transisition play suits him better than possession. But he sure does fit quite well in the Arsenal team.

    Lahm is the best german player for me since a long time. There are not many players who are so consistent than him over so many years. Sadly he’ll never win such a price, almost impossible for defensive players.

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