Bernd Leno has launched a firm defence of teammate Mesut Ozil by highlighting the qualities the playmaker brings to Arsenal.
The German compatriots are experienced figures in The Gunners’ dressing room, with Ozil now the club’s longest serving player left in the current squad.
His time at Arsenal looks to be coming to an end however, with no hint of an extension on his contract, which is due to expire next year.
Ozil has come in for his fair share of criticism in recent years over his worth to the side, but Leno insists the 31-year-old still plays a key role in the team.
Leno told Soccer AM : “I think his passing is very good, it’s unbelievable.
“Of course, in the last time he didn’t make too many assists but when you see how many chances he creates, he is maybe playing the one pass before the assist.
“He brings his team-mates into good positions and many people, they don’t see this.
“But when you see him every day in training and also on the pitch, you can feel how important he is and how important his passing is for the team.”
Leno’s defence comes after former Arsenal striker Kevin Campbell recently suggested the club should be looking to replace Ozil and move him on before his contract runs down.
Campbell told the Metro : “Arsenal need someone in the middle of the pitch who not only can create, but he’s got legs and can break the play up. We miss that.
“There was talk of should we go for Jack Grealish or James Maddison, this type of guy would improve Arsenal.”138208672551
“No disrespect to Mesut Ozil, but he is on the wrong side of his Arsenal career with a year left on his contract after this.
“We need someone who’s going to be in there with legs, we need creativity, and someone that when the game’s not going particularly well, he can get stuck in and knuckle down as well.”