Mesut Özil hasn’t featured for Arsenal this season, and won’t do any time soon after being left out of the club’s official Premier League and Europa League squads.
However, there were moments in the club’s defeat to Aston Villa where they were crying out for a creative presence in midfield, prompting a number of fans to encourage manager Mikel Arteta to ‘free Özil.
Thomas Partey started the game in central midfield with Mohamed Elneny, before an injury to the Ghanaian saw Dani Ceballos introduced for the second half, but Arsenal were soundly beaten by a Villa side who now sit three points above them with a game in hand.
After the game, a glance at Özil’s social media would have shown him ‘liking’ a number of tweets calling on Arteta to welcome him back into the fold.
During his absence from the first-team squad, the German international has been active on Twitter, giving his predictions for matches and making it clear he is still following the results of his employers even if he’s doing so from home.
Özil has not played a minute of Premier League football since March, when he started a 1-0 victory over West Ham United and set up Alexandre Lacazette’s winning goal.