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Ozil magic leaves Wenger gushing
October 1st, 2013 9:35PM

TAGS:  arsenal, england, uefa champions league


[UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Week 2] Mesut Ozil's signing by Arsenal may go down as the transfer of the 2013-14 season. The German scored one goal and set up another as the Gunners handed Napoli its first competitive loss of the season in eight games with a performance in their 2-0 victory that had the fans at Emirates Stadium chanting "Olé, Olé" as the game wound down. The win kept Arsenal unbeaten and untied in all five games Ozil has played since arriving from Real Madrid.

Ozil put Arsenal ahead in the eighth minute with a half-volley off Aaron Ramsey's cross and then set up Frenchman Olivier Giroud for the second goal seven minutes later.

Arsenal coach Arsene Wenger said the Gunners were lucky to have acquired Ozil, who became expendable when Gareth Bale's transfer from Tottenham to Real Madrid was completed in late August, and he described the German as "absolutely amazing, fantastic" in the first half.

"His skill, his finishing, it's what you want to see in the stand when you come and watch football," said Wenger. "Ozil is like the team in that he had an outstanding first half that had everything you want to see from a great player. There was individual skill, team play, finishing and final ball. Just sit there and enjoy it."


After Arsenal's 3-1 home loss to Aston Villa on the opening day of the Premier League season, Gunner fans blasted Wenger and the club management for not spending money on the transfer market, but the $66 million dished out for Ozil has been money well spent.

"I loved him when he was at Madrid," said Wenger. "I thought he was great there. We are lucky to have got him. He enjoys playing football and enjoys playing with his teammates. He's integrated very quickly. We got so much stick at the start so now I'm cautious, but of course he's given belief to everyone around the club. Belief is part of success in football."

Arsenal's streak of qualifying for the knockout stage of the Champions League 13 years in a row looked to be in jeopardy as it was placed in a group that 2013 Champions League runner-up Borussia Dortmund and Napoli as well as Marseille, but the Gunners find themselves in first place headed into their double confrontation with Dortmund in Weeks 3 and 4.

Group E
Basel 0 Schalke 04 1
Steaua Bucharest 0 Chelsea 4
Schalke 04 6 points; Basel, Chelsea 3; Steaua Bucharest 0.

Group F
Borussia Dortmund 3 Marseille 0
Arsenal 2 Napoli 0
Standings: Arsenal 6 points; Napoli, Borussia Dortmund 3; Marseille 0.

Group G
Zenit St. Petersburg 0 Austria Vienna 0
Porto 1 Atletico Madrid 2
Atletico Madrid 6 points; Porto 3; Zenit St. Petersburg, Austria Vienna 1.

Group H
Ajax 1 AC Milan 1
Celtic 0 Barcelona 1
Standings: Barcelona 6 points; AC Milan 4; Ajax 1; Celtic 0.

UCL TV Schedule: Wednesday:
Shakhtar Donetsk-Man United (live) 2:30 pm.

Man City-Bayern Munich (live) 2:30 pm.
Real Madrid-FC Copenhagen (delay) 8 pm.

CSKA Moscow-Viktoria Plzen (live) noon.
Real Madrid-FC Copenhagen (live) 2:30 pm.
Shakhtar Donetsk-Man United (delay) 5 pm.
Man City-Bayern Munich (delay) 8 pm.
Juventus-Galatasaray (delay) 10 pm.

CSKA Moscow-Viktoria Plzen (live) noon.
Real Madrid-FC Copenhagen (live) 2:30 pm.
Man City-Bayern Munich (delay) 5 pm.
Shakhtar Donetsk-Man United (delay) 7 pm.
Bayer Leverkusen-Real Sociedad (delay) 9 pm.

  1. F. Kirk Malloy
    commented on: October 2, 2013 at 9:11 a.m.
    Ozil's goal - a stroll in the park until he calmly unleashes a pinpoint accurate air-borne dagger. Not a wasted ounce of energy or movement, just pure class. An assassin with a priest's demeanor, who raises everyone's play knowing if you make the effort he will get you the ball (see Giroud's dash to the goal mouth). Thrilled he's a Gunner!
  1. I w Nowozeniuk
    commented on: October 2, 2013 at 9:54 a.m.
    "...a stroll in the park...." has nothing to do with soccer, neither does "dancing" nor any other "leisurely" comment. Ozil made things happen because of his talent, field vision, and soccer IQ; nothing more and nothing less.
  1. F. Kirk Malloy
    commented on: October 2, 2013 at 11:36 a.m.
    Yo, I w, time to refill your prescription, your anger management meds have clearly run out. My comment was only laudatory. The truly transcendent athletes - like Gretzky and Jordan - know exactly how much energy to expand at any moment to get the job done - no more, no less. On his goal, Ozil knew exactly where to be and when, and his striking foot moved about 2 inches, all that was needed to get the job done. So stop giving me crap, and go pick on someone your own intellectual a potted plant.

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