Arsenal interim boss Freddie Ljungberg has this afternoon revealed that though Mesut Ozil is injured, he was nevertheless not under consideration for selection versus Everton.
Everton 0-0 Arsenal
The Gunners travelled to Goodison Park a short time ago, for their latest Premier League outing.
Arsenal headed into proceedings hoping to get their form back on track, after being utterly embarrassed by champions Manchester City last weekend.
Freddie Ljungberg once again took on interim duties on the bench for the north Londoners this afternoon, despite Mikel Arteta’s appointment having been made official yesterday afternoon.
When all was said and done on Merseyside, though, a youthful Gunners XI couldn’t break their hosts down.
A drab 90 minutes eventually saw both sides forced to settle for a point, in a 0-0 stalemate.
44 – Gabriel Martinelli’s effort in the 44th minute was Arsenal’s first shot in this match, their longest wait for a first attempt in a Premier League game since May 2015 against Man Utd (51st minute). Squib. pic.twitter.com/QGyzQqh1sa
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) December 21, 2019
As outlined above, the starting line-up opted for by Freddie Ljungberg at Goodison was heavily focused on youth, with the likes of Bukayo Saka, Gabriel Martinelli, Reiss Nelson and Emile Smith Rowe having all been in from the off:
🚨 Five changes from #ARSMCI…
⬅️ Sokratis, Kolasinac, Guendouzi, Pepe, Ozil
➡️ David Luiz, Saka, Xhaka, Nelson, Smith Rowe#EVEARS
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) December 21, 2019
One star name to have been absent from not only Arsenal’s starting XI, but the club’s matchday squad altogether, though, was Mesut Ozil.
German midfielder Ozil was yesterday labelled a doubt to feature versus Everton, having been struggling with a foot injury picked up versus Manchester City last time out.
As such, upon his exclusion this afternoon being made official ahead of kick-off, Freddie Ljungberg was drawn on Ozil’s fitness.
The Swede first confirmed that his side’s midfield creator is indeed sidelined with an injury.
However, significantly, Ljungberg went on to add that Ozil was not under consideration for selection today anyway.
This comes after the 31-year-old reacted angrily to being substituted versus Man City last weekend.
Interesting aside from Ljungberg in his BT Sport pre-match interview as he says Ozil is injured but adds: “Mesut wouldn’t have been in the squad anyway given what happened in the last game.”
Suggests he would have dropped Ozil for show of dissent after being substituted v City.
— James Olley (@JamesOlley) December 21, 2019