Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil has endured a difficult time of late having been ruled out for up to three months through injury and, it would now appear, that he is on the verge of a break-up from girlfriend Mandy Capristo.
But if the relationship between Ozil and Capristo does end, then it will be entirely the own doing of the Germany international, who is accused of having engaged in an affair with Melanie Rickinger, ex-partner of former Bayern Munich player Christian Lell.
The story is so scandalous in Germany that it has featured on the front page of BILD and, according to the newspaper, Ozil is pretty much bang to rights, with Capristo having deleted all online evidence of them being a couple.
It is claimed that Capristo, a pop star and talent show judge, has removed all images of herself and Ozil from her official Instagram and Facebook accounts.
BILD suggest this is practically a ‘confirmation of separation’.
Capristo’s management had this to say: "We regret to inform you that we will not comment in this regard."
But BILD are now just waiting for confirmation that things are over between the pair, who have been together for around two years.
This is the second time in a week that Ozil has been headline news, with scan while on international duty revealing had a “partial lateral ligament tear” in his left knee, an issue he had picked up while playing for Arsenal.
Ozil had complained of feeling some discomfort during Arsenal’s defeat to Chelsea just prior to the international break but, says Arsene Wenger, he was never offered an indication that it was a particular cause for concern.
“[Ozil] did not tell me anything during the game, I did not even know,” the Arsenal manager told reporters on Thursday.
“What happened was that at half-time, just before we went out, the physio told me: ‘Ozil has a little pain with his knee, but it is not bad.’
“He wanted to go on and I told him: ‘If you don’t feel well, tell me and I will take you off straight away.’
“He never did that during the whole game, and after that I left him on because we were in a position where we needed to score a goal and he can deliver the final ball.”
Up against it
It was a bitter pill to swallow for Ozil, who has been under great pressure to really begin his Arsenal career in earnest having, as of yet, fully justified the club record £42.5 million fee the Gunners had paid to sign him from Real Madrid.
Ozil had offered one particularly encouraging performance this season when deployed in his preferred No.10 position in the win over Aston Villa, but it will be back to the drawing board somewhat once he returns.