OZIL SPEAKS: MOURINHO ONCE CALLED ME A COWARD AT REAL MADRID
Jose Mourinho accused Mesut Ozil of being ‘a coward’ who thinks ’50 per cent is enough’ in an explosive dressing room row at Real Madrid.
Arsenal playmaker Ozil, 28, has revealed the details of his relationship with the Manchester United manager – and an insight into his famous temper.
The Germany midfielder, who played under Mourinho for three years at the Bernabeu, says his boss called him out for thinking ‘beautiful passes’ were his only responsibility.
Ozil has been criticised for a perceived lack of effort since moving to the Emirates Stadium in 2013 but Mourinho took him to task.
In his new autobiography, serialised by German newspaper BILD, Ozil says Mourinho shouted at him: ‘You think two beautiful passes are enough… You think you’re so good that 50 percent is enough.’
Mourinho is said to have stared Ozil down as they squared up to each other, ‘like boxers at a stare-down’, before adding: ‘Oh, are you giving up now? You’re such a coward.
‘What do you want? To creep under the beautiful, warm shower? Shampoo your hair? To be alone? Or do you want to prove to your fellow players, the fans out there, and me, what you can do.
Ozil, who claims he threw his match shirt back at his manager, chose the shower – a decision he is said to regret.
The pair are understood to have a good relationship otherwise, with Mourinho labelling Ozil as the world’s best No 10 when they came face-to-face after moving on to Chelsea and Arsenal respectively in 2013.
The upcoming publication of Ozil’s new book, The Magic of the Game, on March 16 comes at a time when his commitment to Arsenal is under the spotlight.
With just over a year left on his £140,000-per-week contract, the Gunners’ highest-paid player has failed to perform in a series of recent big games.
His agent Dr Erkut Sogut says Ozil feels he is being ‘used as a scapegoat’ when results do not go Arsenal’s way amid negotiations over a new deal valued at over £200,000 per week.
Ozil himself has stated that he wants clarification over manager Arsene Wenger’s future before committing his future to the club.
The new book is reported to detail his father’s influence on his move to north London and will include recollections of his four years at Arsenal.
Meanwhile, Wenger expects Ozil to be fit to face Liverpool at Anfield on Saturday despite him missing training due to illness.
‘We’ll see, I don’t know,’ Wenger said. ‘He should be OK.’ Laurent Koscielny and Aaron Ramsey are ready to return after resuming training this week.