The date is Sunday 13th June. The year is 2010. The World Cup has started and seven games have been and gone. For the most part they have been stale as spectacles. The World Cup is exciting and being in South Africa the atmosphere surrounding the event is as special as ever before. Everyone has been quite patient so far and nobody really wants to complain about the lack of goals and attacking football, but it is starting to worry us.
Step forward Germany and step forward Mesut Ozil. Ten minutes into their match with Australia and everyone knows there was something special about this team. They attack the Wallabies relentlessly and on a night of electrifying football they run away 4-0 winners.
Everyone knows Germany are a good side but nobody saw this coming. Michael Ballack was their talisman but missed that tournament through injury. People actually though this was as weak as Germany had ever been heading into South Africa.
In just 90 minutes though they sent a very different message to the world. At the centre of everything they did was a young Werder Bremen playmaker called Ozil, who was not a star in world football but by the end of that night everyone was talking about him.
Two games later Germany took on Ghana and Ozil scored a fantastic volley to win the game. Three games later and the Germans have the first real test of their metal (or so we thought) against England.
Ozil orchestrated things as this young Germans side sliced England to pieces, winning 4-1. After putting four past Argentina they took on Spain and fell marginally short, losing 1-0 to a Carles Puyol header.
That German team was not to win the World Cup but youth was on their side and crucially, their main man, Mesut Ozil, was only 21. Four years later and after a successful three seasons with Real Madrid here he is in the Premier League playing for Arsenal.
His opening months were like that tournament in South Africa. There was a romantic sense of naivety in the air and a young team of talented footballers decided they wanted to take on the world, no holds barred.
Arsenal surprised everyone and Ozil was at the centre of everything they did well. Then came a battering at Man City in December and the mood changed. Arsenal continued to win but no longer with that early freedom and confidence. As they began to win games ugly Ozil began to slow down. With only two assists in eight games people are now asking questions about the German.
The questions are not about his talent, everyone knows he is gifted, but about his attitude. As Arsenal got a taste of their own medicine at Anfield on Saturday Ozil looked fed up. He had no fight and did nothing to influence Arsenal in attack. The question now is, how will he respond?
Does he need to be a part of something more exciting to flourish, Or can he knuckle down and make sure he is the one leading the charge as Arsenal look to regain their swagger?
It is too early to call him a flop, especially after a great start, but football it an unforgiving game and if Ozil he does not change his mentality and his performances he might be finding himself having a new challenge sooner than he would have hoped.
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