Arsenal manager defends Mesut Özil

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Arsene Wenger has defended his club record acquisition Mesut Özil following the German’s performance during the thrashing handed out by Liverpool at the weekend.

The Gunners had the opportunity to extend their lead at the top of the Premier League table to five points but capitulated at the hands of the rampant Reds, conceding four times in the first 19 minutes and eventually losing 5-1.

Özil, who arrived at the Emirates Stadium from Real Madrid for €50 million, drew criticism for his lacklustre display at Anfield, but Wenger says it was a day to forget for everyone involved with Arsenal.

"It was not a good day. He works very hard in training to improve but we were not good enough on the day,” the Arsenal manager told reporters on Tuesday morning.

"He is adapting to the Premier League and is an exceptional football player. He knows when he is not good enough he will get questioned - that is normal."

Özil is in the the Arsenal squad for Wednesday night’s encounter with Manchester United, which represents a vital clash for two clubs chasing different ambitions this season.

Three points will be key for the Gunners as they bid to clinch a first league title for a decade, while Manchester United must arrest their slide if they maintain hope of finishing in the coveted top four positions.

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