Unai Emery explains the controversial Arsenal decision which hasn’t paid off vs Aston Villa
Despite playing only 70 minutes of football, Emery opted to leave Ozil at home for their trip to Germany and has now dropped his number ten for the clash with Villa.
With that clearly in his mind, Emery has instead opted for young winger Saka, who scored in midweek and registered two assists in the Europa League, keeps his place in the starting XI.
Whilst Emery never confirmed that Ozil would start against Villa, it has come as a surprise that the 30-year-old is on the bench given his absence in midweek.
The Gunners boss explained his decision to with Saka to the media, prior to kick-off at the Emirates Stadium.
He said: “He’s young but mature… We need to give young players chances, if they deserve to be with us we’ll continue to help them by starting matches.”
When posed the question of Ozil’s being on the bench, Emery responded with: “We have different players also and different options. [Ozil] is on the bench.”
A damning verdict from the Arsenal boss which has done no effort to shut down speculation that Ozil isn’t in his long-term plans.
Emery has instead gone with an 18-year-old winger on this occasion, having previously preferred Dani Ceballos, Reiss Nelson and Joe Willock in attack area over the World Cup winner.