The 25 year old had the chance to break the deadlock against the German giants in the first leg of the last-16 tie, but his spot-kick was easily saved by Manuel Neuer resulting in a 2-0 defeat for the Gunners.
Gnabry insists that Ozil is a very special player and feels that he should not be blamed for the defeat to Bayern Munich.
Speaking to Arsenal’s official website, he said:
He’s a brilliant player. He showed it when he was at Real Madrid and he showed it when he was the World Cup.
He’s a big part of our team, he helps the team create something up front and he’s just a very special player. He’s a strong person. Obviously you are disappointed when you miss a penalty in such an important game but that’s football.
Sometimes you lose, sometimes you win but we’re a team and we win together. It’s not just down to Mesut that we lost that game. We stick together and work towards the next game – I hope we can turn it around in the second game.
I’ve picked up a lot of things from him. He’s a brilliant offensive player. I’m trying to watch his game and trying to adapt to what he does in a game. He’s just a brilliant player and it’s nice to have him in and around the team.
Ozil has been suffering from a dip in form of late and his confidence hit a new low when he missed the vital penalty early on. His head was down following the miss and put in a poor display for the remainder of the match.
I feel the physicality of the Premier League is the reason why Ozil’s performance has faded over the season. The League is a gruelling race and to play every game is not so easy as it appears. He was always going to take a while to adjust physically and mentally to the demands of playing in the world’s toughest league.
We should not be surprised Ozil is struggling, as any player coming into the Premier League will find the transition very tough and even Messi would have some adjusting to do, due to the difference in the styles of both countries. So let’s all give him some time to adjust before judging him and a little bit of support will definitely help.
Is the criticism on Ozil justified? Share your thoughts in the comments below.