Arsenal - Özil for safety reasons not in the squad - sports
- For safety reasons, Mesut Özil and Sead Kolasinac are not part of Arsenal's squad for Sunday's first game of the season.
- There have been "other incidents" currently under investigation by the police.
Former football international Mesut Özil and former Bundesliga player Sead Kolasinac are not on the squad for Arsenal's first Sunday match at Newcastle United on Sunday for safety concerns. Several media outlets, including the BBC and the AP news agency, report Friday night's announcement of the Premier League club. There were therefore "other incidents" that were currently being investigated by the police. The two Arsenal professionals were at the end of July victims of an attempted robbery, which had gone out in the end aggravated.
"The well-being of our players and their families is always our top priority," the Gunners said. "We chose this decision after talking to both players and their representatives, and we work closely with the police to provide continuous support to players and their families."
Further details about the backgrounds were not known at first. The 30-year-old Özil and his four-year younger teammate, who had also started his professional career at Schalke 04, were initially back in training after the attempted attack on 25 July. Coach Unai Emery had ordered a break for Olympique Lyon for the following friendly match, but the cancellation of the London opening game for the new season in England came as a surprise.
The video footage of the attempted robbery a good two weeks had met with great media attention. As you can see, Kolasinac had blocked the offenders on the open road in London with his bare hands. According to media reports, two strangers with a spearhead on a motorcycle had followed the vehicle in which Özil drove with Kolasinac through northwest London. The perpetrators are said to have targeted the jeep Özils. Maybe they wanted to but also capture the expensive clock of Kolasinac, it was said in other presentations. Özil and Kolasinac managed to drive away the perpetrators.
"Think, we're fine," defender Kolasinac had tweeted a day later. Özil held back with a reaction. For the apparently new incidents there was no reaction on Friday evening from both initially.