Mesut Ozil sat out Arsenal’s last match with a fitness concern so was reduced to the role of a spectator as his teammates tore apart newly-promoted Fulham by an emphatic 5-1 scoreline.
The performance was by some distance the most attractive, cohesive and clinical that the North Londoners have produced so far under Unai Emery, and it is perhaps telling that his team were so effective with Ozil, Aaron Ramsey and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang all omitted from the starting XI (with the caveat that the latter pair came on from the bench and produced three goals between them).
Heading into tonight’s clash with Leicester City at the Emirates Stadium – with the German playmaker once again available – Emery has a selection dilemma to confront. Sooner or later, the Spanish coach must stumble upon a method of coaxing the best out of Ozil, and doing so will require his inclusion in the team.
However, picking Ozil tonight risks upsetting the balance that the Gunners hit upon to such great effect last time out. Yet, the 30-year-old has the quality to produce a moment of magic against what is likely to be a stubborn Foxes defence.
Arsenal fans are certainly divided upon the issue of Ozil’s involvement. When we asked whether or not they wanted to see the No. 10 on the pitch from the off tonight, just 57% said yes. See the full results below.