Football

Mesut Özil booed by fans

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Arsenal star Mesut Özil just can't catch a break at the moment. Granted, he is not at his best for the Gunners, but you would think a friendly outing for his national team could provide some respite - it appears not.

Özil assisted Mario Götze in the 16th minute for the only goal in Germany's meeting with Chile and, by most accounts, played fairly well in a match that the South Americans dominated.

However, the home fans in Stuttgart were obviously not happy with the Gunners' record signing, sending boos and whistles his way when he was substituted in the 89th minute for Matthias Ginter.

It has been a trying few weeks for Özil as he has been receiving a large dose of criticism in the English press for failing to maintain the sensational start he made after Arsene Wenger got the Emirates Stadium club to fork out £42.4million to secure his signature from Real Madrid.

The 25-year-old was rested recently after looking a bit ragged in the defeat to Bayern Munich in the Champions League, where he missed a penalty, and just generally struggling for form since the turn of the year.

Germany teammate Jerome Boateng, who could be lining up for Bayern when the club's play the second leg of the last 16 tie next Tuesday, criticised fans for their lack of perspective.

"They have some nerve. You can't shine all the time," he said when quizzed after the game.

Meanwhile Germany assistant coach Oliver Bierhoff expressed surprise at the reaction of the fans in Stuttgart and puzzlement as to why Özil was subject to such treatment.

"I don't understand the whistling. I find it a shame that a player such as Mesut is picked out. I would hope for different support for a game like that," he said.

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