Freddie Ljungberg branded shameful for Mesut Ozil comments by Arsenal legend Charlie Nicholas

Freddie Ljungberg axed Mesut Ozil from the Arsenal squad which travelled to Everton last weekend (Picture: Getty)

Charlie Nicholas has branded Freddie Ljungberg’s comments on Mesut Ozil’s conduct ‘shameful’.

Ozil was hauled off against Manchester City a fortnight ago with the Gunners trailing 3-0 and replaced by teenager Emile Smith Rowe who was making his Premier League debut.

The former Germany international trudged towards the substitutes’ bench as he made his way off the pitch and kicked his gloves in the air in apparent disgust.

Ozil subsequently missed last Saturday’s stalemate against Everton with a foot injury, but Ljungberg later confirmed he would not have selected the club’s highest earner had he been available for selection.

He said: The fans were not happy. I got asked about it and said, ‘At Arsenal, that’s not how we behave and not what we do’. I stand by that.

Mesut Ozil reacted angrily to being taken off against Manchester City (Picture: Getty)

‘Mesut was injured, but I would not have picked him for the squad because I want to make a stance that it’s not what I accept from an Arsenal football player.

‘That’s my decision. I won’t make the decisions again, but that’s what I think.’

Mikel Arteta has since been confirmed as Unai Emery’s permanent successor and Nicholas fears he has been provided a hospital pass by Ljungberg in regards to Ozil’s situation and Alexandre Lacazette, who was also dropped against City and Everton.

‘I hope it is a good news story for Mikel Arteta’s first game,’ said Nicholas ahead of the Boxing Day fixture at Bournemouth.

‘As much as I am pleased, Freddie Ljungberg will be most pleased that Arteta is in. His comments on the Mesut Ozil and Alexandre Lacazette situations were shameful. What was he saying?

‘I will support all of the youngsters wholeheartedly, but the one thing I already like about Arteta is that he had them in on Sunday, which shows his leadership qualities already, to say this is poor and start straight away to get them in and rebuild.

‘When Nicolas Pepe settles in, with Lacazette through middle, Arsenal are a really encouraging front three with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Arteta cannot sort the defence, and he will go with a more aggressive mentality, and this will begin to pay off in this match.’

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