Mesut Ozil slammed by Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness

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Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness has accused Mesut Ozil of producing bad performances for Germany for years after the Arsenal midfielder announced his retirement from international football.

Ozil, 29, won the World Cup with Germany four years ago, but was also part of Joachim Low‘s squad which failed to progress from the group stages of the 2018 tournament in Russia.

In a lengthy statement posted on Twitter on Sunday evening, Ozil – a third-generation Turkish-German who was born in Gelsenkirchen – accused the German football Association of treating him with “racism and disrespect”.

Ozil claimed German FA (DFB) chiefs wanted him “out of the team” before the tournament, due to the emergence of a photograph featuring him with Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

The picture led to criticism of Ozil in Germany. According to the player, only the intervention of head coach Low and team manager Oliver Bierhoff ensured he would then take part at the World Cup.

Ozil, who won 92 caps for Germany, also revealed he and his family had received hate mail and threatening phone calls and been subjected to social media abuse.

Uli Hoeness

Nevertheless, Bayern president Hoeness, who won the World Cup with West Germany in 1974, found little sympathy with the midfielder when asked for his views on Ozil’s decision.

Quoted by German newspaper Bild, Hoeness said: “I’m glad this nightmare is over. He has been playing crap for years.

“The last tackle he won was before the 2014 World Cup – and now he is hiding himself and his poor performances behind this photo.”

Hoeness also hit out at the support shown to Ozil on social media following Sunday’s announcement.

“His 35million followers, that of course do not actually exist in the real world, believe that Ozil has played exceptionally when he successfully finds his man with a square ball.”

Arsenal team-mate Hector Bellerin, however, offered full backing to Ozil, who is away with the Gunners squad on a pre-season tour to Singapore.

The defender wrote on Twitter: “Surreal that someone who has done so much for his country on and off the pitch has been treated with such disrespect.

“Well done @MesutOzil1088 for standing up to this behaviour!”

The DFB has yet to make any official comment.

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Germany and Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil retires from international football

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Germany midfielder Mesut Ozil has announced his retirement from international football with immediate effect in a statement on Twitter, saying he feels “unwanted” by the national team.

The Arsenal man was fiercely criticised as Germany crashed out of the World Cup at the group stage, while a photograph he posed for with Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdogan ahead of the tournament led to his loyalty to Joachim Low’s side being questioned.

Ozil, who is of mixed German and Turkish heritage, said on Sunday night that he and his family had received hate mail, threatening phone calls and social media abuse.

In a statement on Twitter he wrote: “The treatment I have received from the DFB (German Football Association) and many others makes me no longer want to wear the German national team shirt.

“I feel unwanted and think that what I have achieved since my international debut in 2009 has been forgotten.”

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Watch: Fernando Torres' debut for Japan's Sagan Tosu ends in defeat

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New colours: Fernando Torres

Former Spain striker Fernando Torres made his debut for Japan’s Sagan Tosu but it wasn’t the dream start he expected as his new side fell to a 1-0 defeat.

The 34-year-old made a shock move to Asia after ending his association with Atletico Madrid and despite coming off the bench, he failed to make an impression as Sagan Tosu lost 1-0 to Vegalta Sendai.

Watch our video below on Torres’ debut:

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