Robert Pires comforts Mesut Ozil after 'terrible' season

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Robert Pires has backed Mesut Ozil to succeed at Arsenal, saying that he also took time to adapt to life in England.

Pires returned to train with the Gunners earlier this season having enjoyed a successful period with the club between 2000 and 2006. Joining from Marseille for £6m, Pires is considered one of Arsene Wenger's finer acquisitions but it didn't look that way after his debut season.

The 40-year-old admits that he had a "terrible" first season in north London giving hope to Arsenal's record signing Mesut Ozil.

Ozil moved to the Emirates Stadium last summer in a £42.5m deal from Real Madrid, shattering the club's transfer record and arriving with plenty of expectation on his shoulders. Despite getting off to a good start, Ozil has since struggled to translate his best form to the Premier League.

Pires believes that Ozil's bad form is normal for a player arriving in the physical Premier League and has backed the German international to improve in a similar way to himself.

"Mesut is a very good player," he is quoted as saying in the Independent.

"For Mesut, it is very difficult. The tempo is not the same. He was like me. I remember the first season was terrible."

Ozil was injured in the game against Bayern Munich and has been missing for key games against Chelsea and Swansea, neither of which Arsenal have won.

Their Premier League title hopes all but over, but Pires believes Arsenal will launch themselves back into the race if they beat Manchester City on Saturday evening at the Emirates.

"I hope. It is my dream like for the fans, like for Wenger, like for the players," he said. "But it depends on Saturday. If Arsenal win Saturday [they still have a chance]." 

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Robert Pires
Premier League
Robert Pires

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