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'Still close to my heart': Joachim Low disappointed after Ozil rebuffs attempts at reconciliation

The Germany boss admits he must accept that the Gunners star ‘does not want to talk to us’ after failing to meet the midfielder while in London.

GERMANY HEAD COACH Joachim Low is disappointed and confused by Mesut Ozil’s apparent disinterest in holding face-to-face talks.

Low visited Arsenal’s training ground during a trip to London this week, reportedly to meet with the club’s academy manager, former Germany defender Per Mertesacker.

He is believed to have also held discussions with Bernd Leno and Shkodran Mustafi but Ozil was not present at the time.

The playmaker retired from international football in July after a dismal World Cup campaign which saw the four-time winners exit the competition in the group stage.

The Gunners midfielder cited discrimination against his Turkish heritage from the German Football Association as a key motivating factor behind his decision, which had also been a major talking point before the tournament began.

Low has previously spoken of failed attempts to contact Ozil over the phone and the pair’s relationship appears to remain at a low ebb.

“Mesut was not [at the training ground], so we have to accept that he does not want to talk to us at the moment. I do not know the reasons,” Low said in quotes reported by German media.

“Personally, I am disappointed that if you have worked together for so long… I would have liked a personal conversation.

“Of course I would have taken the chance to speak with Mesut Ozil, [he is] still close to my heart.”

The 2014 World Cup winning head coach was speaking after UEFA announced Germany as the official hosts for Euro 2024 in Switzerland on Thursday afternoon.

Low, who earlier this year extended his contract until 2022, welcomed the news as a boost for the nation’s footballers after a difficult last few months.

“A tournament like this is extraordinary for a country and can be a huge motivation for young players,” he said.

“It’s a good step for the coming years. Everyone at the Association can now start planning.”

- Omni

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