Arsenal playmaker Mesut Ozil is facing a race to be fit in time for Germany’s World Cup opener against Mexico on June 17.
The midfielder ended the season with a back injury, but a new complaint on his knee has seen the 29-year-old forced to miss out on training for the last four days.
Ozil doesn’t seem to be having the best of times in Die Mannschaft squad. Before his most recent setback, the Gunner came under criticism from national team boss Joachim Low for not working hard enough during training – something he’s frequently pulled up on back in England.
Well now, according to Bild, he doesn’t seem to have too much of a choice in how much effort he puts into training, having missed the last four days through a knee injury sustained against Austria – a 2-1 defeat in which Ozil scored his country’s only goal.
A collision with Watford’s Sebastian Prodl in the first half had a strong effect on the number 10, and Ozil was replaced by Julian Draxler in the 76th minute.
Since then, the player hasn’t been able to train with his teammates, and is facing a fight to be fit in time for the tournament’s imminent start, having only been able to join in with fitness and conditioning work.
Germany play one more warm-up match against Saudi Arabia on Friday and Ozil is almost guaranteed to miss out, with Ilkay Gundogan or Leon oretzka expected to receive the nod over the Arsenal man.
Germany have a huge amount of expectation on them heading into the tournament in Russia. Having won the competition back in 2014, many are tipping Joachin Low to repeat his side’s success this time around.