'It was cowardly' - Frankfurt sporting director tears into Mesut Ozil over retirement

'It was cowardly' - Frankfurt sporting director tears into Mesut Ozil over retirement

Mesut Ozil has been branded a "coward" in the wake of his controversial retirement from global football.

Many from the German footballing community questioned the political intentions of Ozil and whether the footballer had the heart to play for Germany football team.

Ali, who had his Kurdish Alevi parents moved to Germany during his childhood to escape discrimination in Turkey, confirmed he had suffered from racism while looking for a flat to rent or when he was denied entry to nightclubs despite the fact that his friends were allowed to enter.

'Ozil's criticism on social media, especially in the direction of the German Football Association (DFB), is unbearable.

Anyways, Özil has blamed "unfair discrimination" over his meeting with the Turkish president Tayyip Erdoğan in May for his decision to retire from global football.

"I think that's a bit cowardly", he told German newspaper Bild am Sonntag.

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'This blanket charge of racism simply does not correspond to reality.

Lothar Matthaus who won 150 caps for Germany believes that the Arsenal midfielder departure should not be taken as a loss from a sporting perspective. "For us footballers, the rule is 'be a man and stand up'".

He thanked fans for their "love" during the Gunners' pre-season tour and has received backing from his team-mates and new manager Unai Emery.

The 29-year-old's actions have sharply divided opinion in his homeland and Matthaus, who won 150 caps between 1980 and 2000 for the national side, feels that both the player and the DFB failed to anticipate how much of a hot-button issue it would become after Germany failed to make the last four in Russian Federation for the first time in 20 years.

'If he does not know that, then he is either totally naive - I can not imagine that - or it is calculating and he wanted to be provocative, or else he is alienated, of course.

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