The midfielder brought his international career to an abrupt over the weekend, citing what he called “racism and disrespect” for his Turkish roots and claiming he had been made a scapegoat for the team’s World Cup failures after a controversial meeting with Turkish leader Erdogan in May. Ozil has been generally praised by members of the football fraternity for speaking out on the matter. Former Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand, capped 81 times by England, laconically tweeted his support for the Arsenal player, with the word “Respect” quoting a tweet of Ozil’s statement. Read more
Mesut Ozil’s shock departure from the German national team amid a torrid reaction to his meeting with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has prompted a divide in reaction from sports stars and commentators.