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Ozil over his tough spot

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Arsenal's Olivier Giroud (R) celebrates with team mate Mesut Ozil after scoring a second goal against Everton. Picture credit: Toby Melville / REUTERS

Arsenal's Olivier Giroud (R) celebrates with team mate Mesut Ozil after scoring a second goal against Everton. Picture credit: Toby Melville / REUTERS

Arsenal's Olivier Giroud (R) celebrates with team mate Mesut Ozil after scoring a second goal against Everton. Picture credit: Toby Melville / REUTERS

MESUT OZIL is finally over the mental blow of his penalty miss nightmare as he aims to help defeat Bayern Munich in the Champions League tomorrow night, according to Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger.

The Germany playmaker scored his first club goal since the start of December in the 4-1 FA Cup quarter-final win over Everton at the Emirates Stadium, where he also helped set up a fine finish for Olivier Giroud late on.

Arsenal's record £42.5million signing was given extra time away to recover after a dead leg followed on from the first tie against Bayern, when Ozil's early fluffed spot-kick proved a turning point as the Bundesliga side won 2-0 after Gunners goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny was sent off.

AFFECTED

Wenger feels the 25-year-old former Real Madrid star is now fully focused once more as he prepares for tomorrow's second leg.

"I think it affected him mentally too much, the penalty he missed against Bayern. It was not only physical, it was mental," said Wenger.

"He had the feeling he let the team down at a very important moment of the game, that affected his performance very much.

"Psychologically sometimes the wound is like a physical one. You can talk and talk and talk, but you just have to leave it to time.

"I think he is over it. He has a good opportunity to show on Tuesday night how good he is."

Ozil was swamped by his team-mates after he dispatched a pass from Santi Cazorla low into the far corner to set Arsenal on their way after seven minutes on Saturday.

"It was certainly important to him, and to the team as well. I like the way he finished against Everton, calm in a convincing way," Wenger added. "He made great runs and was absolutely outstanding from the first to the last minute."

Wenger hopes Ozil can go on to add a cutting edge to his game in the final third, having created more chances than any other Arsenal player against Everton.

"I would like him to find the right balance between being a provider and finisher," the Arsenal boss said.

"His strong side is providing, but he is pacey, much quicker than people think he is, and if he gets into the right areas he can score goals."

During the international break, Ozil was jeered by some German supporters as he came off in the win over Chile in Stuttgart. Wenger does not feel it is long before Ozil will have everyone back onside.

RESPECTED

He said: "Ozil is hugely respected in Germany, but we live in a society where the period of time is very short between the boos to the applause. We have to live with that."

Meanwhile, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has warned Bayern Munich that Arsenal can use their FA Cup triumph as a springboard to pulling off a shock victory.

Oxlade-Chamberlain insists there is still life left in the tie, as Arsenal aim to repeat last season's 2-0 victory at the Allianz Arena, which saw them bow out only on away goals.

"Yes, 100 per cent (we can do it). Last season we went there 3-1 down – everyone wrote us off, but we managed to get a good 2-0 win there," he said.

"We will be feeling we can take from that, and from Saturday's performance.

"In football a lot of things can happen. We are top side, they will know the job is not done and we know the job is not done."

Oxlade-Chamberlain feels the trip to Wembley can lift the whole club as they aim to return on May 17.

"You watch FA Cup games at Wembley when you are growing up and that's where you want to be," Oxlade-Chamberlain said.

"As a professional and as a winner you always want to win things, that goes for every member of our team.

"There is no doubt it (Arsenal's trophy drought) is in the back of your mind because all you want to do is win. This is an opportunity for us, we are one step closer, but we can't get carried away and look to the end goal yet, we need to get through to a tough semi – and even before that we have hard games."


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