In the summer of 2010, a young Germany team took the World Cup by storm. By beating traditional heavyweights such as Argentina and Germany 4-0, this team really made a bold statement. While the scorelines were impressive, the manner in which they achieved these victories was what was really impressive. Playing silky, smooth football at high intensity, Die Mannschaft emerged as everyone's second favourite team much like Dortmund in the last season's Champions League. 2 players outshone the rest: Thomas Muller and Mesut Ozil.
Ozil was the creative heart of this team and for many football fans were seeing him for the first time. He provided 3 assists in 7 games and scored one vital goal against Ghana, but there was so much more to his game as well as Madridistas would see.
Real Madrid at this point were in transition. Florentino Perez's comeback season has proved trophyless. Pelligrini did a good job but with the likes of Kaka and Ronaldo around, he should have done better. The new Galactico this season was a coach: The Special One Jose Mourinho. Ozil was signed that summer for 18 million euros as back up to Kaka. While that signed a hefty fee for a little known player, in hindsight it was dirt cheap.
He made his debut as a subsitute against Mallorca but he really came to life against Deportiva La Coruna. Providing an assist as well as scoring a goal, he went off to a standing ovation from the Madrid faithful. The Santiago Bernabeu can be a tough place to play and the fans are awfully hard to please but Ozil was an instant hit.
His incredible season produced 37 assists and 15 goals. He developed a near telephatic connection with CR7. His second season would give him his first taste of silverware in Madrid with him providing an amazing 35 assists as Madrid racked up 100 points and won the league. Perhaps his most memorable assist( not his best) might be the one in El Clasico to set up Ronaldo for his Calma Goal which you could say was the title winning goal. Collecting the ball on the halfway line, Ozil waited a second and then sent a through ball to the penalty ball which CR7 latched onto. The assist highlighted the extent to which Ozil understood the runs which Ronaldo makes.
Euro 2012 was a dissapointment for Germany but not for Ozil who had an excellent tournament. The excess workload affected him and he started the 12-13 season slowly and was dropped by Mourinho. In typical style, he soon recovered his game and scored some crucial goals for Madrid. 2 goals against Vallidolid secured a 3-2 victory in the 90th minute and a freekick against Dortmund to make it 2-2 saved Madrid blushes.
Ozil was a maestro, a wizard, arguably the best No.10 in the game alongside Iniesta. He was the glue of this team providing the transition between midfield and attack. His off the ball movement was incredible. He often drew away defenders which allowed the speed kings, Di Maria and Ronaldo to cut inside and score. His big game mentality was initially lacking but he soon became a big game player.
He was a fan favourite. The fans absolutely adored him and he was their darling. Cristiano took 3 years to make the fans chant his name. Ozil took much lesser. Ronaldo might be the best player in this team but you could say Ozil was the best natural attacking player. He was an absolute delight to watch. He glided over the pitch like a delicate swan, spraying passes all over. Avatar Eyes has an unmatched prophetic vision and this is seen in the incredible number of assists he has produced.
Florentino Perez is a madcap president. Some of his decision have had serious consequences for Madrid such as firing Del Bosque or letting go of Makelele. In my opinion, the sale of Ozil is one such decision. The players as well the fans are outraged at this decison. Ramos, Khedira, Ronaldo and Arbeloa among others have been vocal in their disgust and shock at his departure. For the sake of his so called Galactico project, he has sacrificed Ozil for Isco and Bale. When the fans chanted " Ozil no se vende" ( dont sell Ozil), he merely shussed them. Isco is a great player but he still is not as good as Ozil yet. Modric has settled in his deep playmaking role and hence if Isco is injured, there is no credible back-up.
Fans all over the world as still coming to grips with the fact that we will never see Ozil wear the white shirt again. We will miss his elegance, his poise and his brilliance. Having Bale is great but it is not worth losing Ozil. Personally, he was my favourite player. As Mourinho said yesterday " He is unique; There is no copy of him not even a bad one".We will not see Ozil in the Bernabeu again but he will be forever in our hearts. He will always be a Madridista and one of us.
To Ozil I say: Thank you for the last 3 years. Thank you for all those moments which left us gaping at your brilliance. The Bernabeu will always chant your name and you are always welcome back. You said that you could see yourself ending your career here. Well we all hope you do. While the move to Arsenal has left us shocked, I believe it is good for you on a personal level. Over there, you will receive the limelight you truly deserve and will be the centre of the team. Perhaps you can win the Balon D'or you truly deserve. Entertain and mesmerize them like you have here. I wish you best of luck for the future with the Gunners. The Madrid coaches and directors might have not believed in you but we always will. Never forget us. Thank you 〽1Ö