Arsenal manager Unai Emery has reportedly told Mesut Ozil that he will need to increase his work-rate if he is to be a regular fixture in his starting lineup this season.
Emery is understood to want to improve the fitness levels of Arsenal’s players to suit his high-intensity style, and is unwilling to tolerate those who do not put in enough work.
Questions over Ozil’s work-rate have been raised previously in his Gunners career, but The Mirror reports that Emery has made it clear to the playmaker that he must buy into the new philosophy at the club.
Ozil signed a new £350,000-a-week contract at the Emirates Stadium in January to make him the highest earner in the club’s history, but the report claims that Emery would not hesitate to leave him out of his side if he does not meet his demands.
The 29-year-old was absent for Arsenal’s first win of the season against West Ham United on Saturday, sparking reports of a fallout which Emery was quick to deny.
The official reason behind the midfielder’s absence was illness, which is believed to be the seventh time that Ozil has called in sick already this year.