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Joey Barton responds when asked what he would do with Mesut Ozil at Arsenal

(Photo by Rob Newell - CameraSport via Getty Images)


Joey Barton responds when asked what he would do with Mesut Ozil at Arsenal

Joey Barton has told TalkSPORT on Friday (07:40am) that he would be playing Mesut Ozil at Arsenal if he was in Mikel Arteta’s shoes, rather than leaving the club’s highest-paid player on the sidelines.

Ozil, 31, failed to make a single appearance for Arsenal after the restart with a back injury supposedly ruling him out of the final 10 league games. He has entered the final 12 months of his contract at The Emirates.

However, the message from the player and his agent remains the same. He wants to stay at Arsenal and see out his £350,000-a-week contract with the Gunners, even if it means he will stay on the sidelines and struggle to play.

Asked what he would do if he was in Arteta’s shoes when it comes to the dilemma of Ozil, Fleetwood Town manager Barton stated he would take a different approach to the Spanish boss  – and play him until he leaves.

“It’s a tough one,” Barton said. “Everyone knows what everyone is on [wages] and it affects the dressing room. If the big-paid players aren’t performing and those on less are playing, it creates an ill-feeling. He’s a World Cup winner, an unbelievable player and I would be trying to get the maximum out of him.”

 (Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

TBR’s view – Is Ozil good enough to start at the moment?

Arteta has found success in using a 3-4-3 system that sees the Gunners use width with Nicolas Pepe and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang either side of Eddie Nketiah or Alexandre Lacazette.

Bukayo Saka and Hector Bellerin as wing-backs, a back three of Shkodran Mustafi, David Luiz and Kieran Tierney and two holding midfielders in Granit Xhaka and Dani Ceballos. Arteta likes his side to work hard and press high.

Ozil is a top, top player but in a system that is working for Arteta, he simply does not get in. Even if Arteta reverted to side that needs a 10, a high press deployed by the Gunners does not suit the more laid-back Ozil.

(Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

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