What anything can you do with 55,000 euros a day? On the one hand, this is the dream of a normal employee who brings home an average of 48,000 euros in this country if he works full-time – per year. On the other hand, because it is about the salary of professional soccer player Mesut Özil, it is to a certain extent a populist question. After all, the market gave it that way in other times.
But it is undisputed that there is something more absurd than paying someone so much money to kick a ball particularly well from A to B and sometimes into a goal. Namely, to pay so much money even though he doesn’t even play, at least not in competitive games for the first team at Arsenal. After coach Mikel Arteta had already renounced Özil’s services in this Europa League season, he also deleted his name from the entry list for the Premier League.
Özil’s former coach Arsène Wenger described the fact that there was no more room for the 2014 world champion as a “waste”. You could say that. It should also be added that this is the same Arsenal FC, who bought a new player for 50 million pounds, but at the same time saw the need to dismiss 55 non-kicking employees due to the pandemic – including the performer of the popular club mascot “Gunnersaurus”. This is then not only difficult to convey to those people who like to use up the contents of their refrigerator before they fill the bags again.
Özil himself was also piqued that he missed the “loyalty” of the club he “loved”, he wrote on social media, which, despite all understandable disappointment, also follows an idiosyncratic logic. After all, Özil is still being paid, and if it had been more important to him to play, he could certainly have done it elsewhere, just maybe for a little less.
Conversely, because he did not make it easy for his club, the impression that the gifted professional footballer Özil got stuck in his own (thought) world, in which he increasingly interprets the global political situation, most recently in the conflict over Nagornyj, is reinforced -Karabach, who has long since lost the authority to interpret the field.
In this episode you can see something else than the seemingly absurd waste of capital and the question of morality – which is often idle in football anyway. Namely that which has been lost en passant. Özil’s quiet art, the daring ease with which he once enchanted the football world from Gelsenkirchen-Bismarck. From a German perspective, all of this seems very far away, a phantom pain that hardly flares up, while the scars of another story can still be felt strongly.