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‘Scapegoat’ Ozil should quit German team – Father

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The father of Mesut Ozil said Sunday his son should quit Germany ’ s national squad after he was “ made the scapegoat ” for Die Mannschaft ’ s shock first – round defeat at the World Cup.
Ozil , 29 , has come in for hefty criticism in Germany after the World Champions crashed out in Russia , finishing bottom of their group .

Pressure had already been mounting on the Arsenal midfielder in the World Cup run- up over a controversial photograph with Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdogan that was seized on to question his loyalty to Germany .

On Thursday , Germany ’ s team boss Oliver Bierhoff sparked a new round of outcry over a statement suggesting Ozil , who has Turkish roots , should have been dropped after his failure to publicly clear up the Erdogan meeting .

“ This statement is insolent . In my opinion , it is aimed at saving one ’ s own skin , ” said the mid – fielder ’ s father Mustafa Ozil in an interview with Bild am Sonntag .

Bierhoff later backtracked , apologising that he “ was wrong” .

Ozil senior said he believed his son had agreed to have a photograph taken with Erdogan only out of “ politeness” and that it was never meant to be a political statement.

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He also defended Ozil for not having spoken out to clarify his position .

“ He no longer wants to explain himself , he no longer wants to have to defend himself all the time. He has been playing for nine years in the German team … including becoming world champions with the A – team .

“ He has contributed a lot for this country . It has always been : if we win, we win together.

“ But when we lose , we lose because of Ozil ? He is now getting whistled at and made a scapegoat . I can understand if he feels insulted , ” said the midfielder ’ s father .

Calling the treatment accorded to his son “ so unfair ” , Ozil senior said “ he needs to decide for himself . But if I were in his place , I ’ d say – thanks a lot but that ’ s it !”

“ The hurt has grown too strong . And who knows what’ ll happen at the next match . In Mesut ’ s place , I would step down . But that ’ s just my very personal opinion , ” he said .

AFP .

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