Coach of the Arsenal football club Mikel Arteta, has explained why Mesut Ozil wasn’t included in his 25-man Europa League squad for this season, saying he has “an excess of foreign players”.
The former Gunners player stated this during his press conference today.
The German international will not play any part in Arsenal’s Europa League games, alongside former Borussia Dortmund defender Papastathopoulos Sokratis and William Saliba.
The arrival of Thomas Partey from Atletico Madrid on deadline day left Arsenal with 19 non-homegrown players in their squad.
UEFA rules stipulate that a club’s ‘A list’ can contain a maximum of 25 players – including two goalkeepers – with a minimum of eight places for ‘locally-trained players’.
Speaking about Ozil’s omission, the Spaniard said;
“He wasn’t the only one who was not in the [EL] squad. It is a really difficult decision for me to make because to leave players out of the squad at that level, where they know they cannot get involved, is really tough.
“I don’t like it at all, but the decision had to be made because we have an excess of foreign players. Unfortunately, we had to make that decision,” Arteta said.