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Everybody wants to play under him – Ozil leads tributes to outgoing Arsenal coach Arsene Wenger

Mesut Ozil (left), Arsenal midfielder, with coach Arsene Wenger

London, April 21: Arsenal star Mesut Ozil paid tribute to Arsene Wenger, saying he was proud to have played under the outgoing manager. Wenger announced Friday he would leave Arsenal at the end of the season after 22 years in charge of the Premier League giants.

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Ozil, who arrived at the club from Real Madrid in 2013, was full of praise for Wenger and the Frenchman's approach.

"He's the main reason I came here, he convinced me and I am proud to have played under him," he told Sky Sports.

"Everyone has a lot of respect for him. He has won many titles, developed some good players and has always played excellent football, so you know as a player if you come here you are going to be able to develop and play in that style.

"He is an honest guy, a very respectful guy, has a good personality, and everybody wants to play under him."

Ozil's future at the Emirates Stadium was uncertain before the Germany international signed a three-year deal in February.

The 29-year-old, who has scored four goals and assisted eight in the Premier League this season, said he always wanted to remain at Arsenal.

"He is the boss who brought me here and wanted me to stay so I said I am comfortable here, I never wanted to leave and that's why I stayed," Ozil said.

"Now we want to reach our further goals."

Ozil and other Arsenal players, including the ones who left the club for greener pastures, were in full praise for the manager.

Defender Per Mertesacker told the Arsenal website: ""There have been a lot of challenges, a lot of highs and lows, but how he went through tough times has taught me a lot about his character and about how to trust people and get the people in the right places to be successful."

Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola, who has clinched the Premier League this year, said: "I wish him all the best. In the future, hopefully he can be involved in football in a different role. These kind of people are necessary for football because of their experience. Here in the Premier League, with Arsenal, with FIFA, with UEFA - anywhere."

Former Arsenal star Robin van Persie, who has played under both Wenger and Ferguson at United, said on Twitter: "I will always see you as my footballing father where under your guidance I had the chance to grow as a man and a player, i'm forever thankful for that and wish you all the very best for the next chapter in your life! #ThanksArsene #TheBoss"

Source: OPTA

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Story first published: Saturday, April 21, 2018, 6:00 [IST]
Other articles published on Apr 21, 2018
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