Arsenal captain Laurent Koscielny has warned Liverpool to prepare to face Mesut Ozil at a time when the playmaker is in “unstoppable” form, as was evidenced by his performance against Leicester City last week.
The German was the heart of his side’s comeback win over the Foxes after Hector Bellerin scored an own goal to put the hosts behind at the Emirates.
First he scored the equaliser before setting about orchestrating two more moves that ended up with the ball in the back of the net thanks to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
Ozil bagged an assist for one of the strikes and was credited with playing the pass to set up Hector Bellerin to find the Gabonese striker for the other.
He also used the movement and awareness of Alexandre Lacazette to great effect, feeding off the Frenchman’s intelligence in space to pull the Leicester defence apart.
It was a performance that saw the former Real Madrid midfielder hailed as one of the very best players in the Premier League, if not the world, and his skipper believes that the 30-year-old could have too much for Jurgen Klopp’s team when they travel to the Emirates this weekend.
“Mesut’s deserved all the plaudits he got after his performance against the Foxes,” said Koscielny. “He was incredible.
“His goal bailed us out before the break and then his pass for Hector [Bellerin] on our second goal is the best ball you will see all season. And he added an assist for Auba after a great dummy and understanding with Laca.
“When Mesut is in this form he is unstoppable and makes us win. He has extraordinary qualities. There are not many players like him in the world right now capable of producing a pass like the one for Hector, beating four opposition players with just one ball.”
According to Koscielny, Ozil’s performance against Leicester is one that will live long in the memory but he wants the playmaker to be focused on his next challenge, dissecting a much-improved Liverpool defence, rather than dwelling on the win over Leicester.
“His display on that night will stay in people’s minds for a very long time,” said the defender. “It is a case of ‘I was there when Ozil had that performance against Leicester’.
“However, he needs to be at this level as much as possible this season. Great players are the ones playing at their best the whole season.”
Koscielny has promised fans that he is nearing a return to action after joining the rest of the Arsenal first-team squad in full training.
He has not played for the club since being forced off through injury in the semi-finals of the Europa League against Atletico Madrid last season.