Sky Sports pundits Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher have hit out at Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil after the German midfielder turned down the club’s proposal to take a 12.5 percent wage deduction.
Ozil is one of the club’s highest earners, and reportedly takes home a staggering £350,000-a-week.
But as revealed on Monday by Mirror Sport the 31-year-old is one of three Gunners players who have rejected the pay cut suggested by Arsenal, and he is said to be pushing for a deferral to his wages instead.
Speaking on Sky Sports, Neville and Carragher expressed their dismay with Ozil’s decision.
“His [Ozil’s] agent did him no favour when he came out three or four weeks ago when he said let’s wait and see. I always felt this would be a problem,” Carragher said.
“There’s two strands of players who might not fully engage, and that’s a young lad who maybe didn’t have the revenue, or a player coming to the end of his contract.
“But the fact the highest-paid player hasn’t done it… the rest of the squad has agreed it, you’ve got to go with the rest of the players. As you say, it’s a massive PR own goal.
“I’m not going to have a go at him for the wages he’s earned, blame the people who are paying him, but the highest-paid member of the squad should be one who sets the example.”
Neville was equally as disgusted by Ozil’s stance, and added: “The principle of not being together as a group is indefensible. You’re a team on and off the pitch.
“I wouldn’t like to be one of the three who hasn’t agreed. It will alienate and isolate them from the rest. When a group of players are voting on something, you go along with it.
“It just demonstrates the complexities of what is going on at Premier League clubs right now. Football is eating itself from the inside out.
“Most clubs, players, are not at war but they’re in a massive battle. The players don’t trust the clubs and this is just another example of it.”