Before Real Madrid sold Mesut Ozil there had been weeks of stories in the Spanish press doing the groundwork for the club. Media closest to Madrid were claiming he was for sale because he'd been trying underhand tactics to get a pay-rise, had a bad attitude, and they basically didn't want him around the place. He was trouble.
Perhaps it's a plan which Madrid has used once too often because it didn't work. When Mesut Ozil was sold to Arsenal there wasn't understanding that this bad apple had been chucked from the basket, there was anger that one of the club's best players had seemingly been sold to fund a budget busting move for Gareth Bale, someone the fans didn't see as essential anyway.
Fans, commentators, players, everyone who could be critical was, and it wasn't just coming from Madrid. Coaches from around the world spoke, among them the always-happy-to-give-a-quote pair of Jose Mourinho and Jurgen Klopp and Madrid have started to look a bit foolish. This morning we did a piece covering El Confidencial's claims that Florentino Perez was 'upset' with the reaction of the players and thought that they, more than anyone, should have known what Ozil was up to. Of course, it's not for the benefit of the players but rather the supporters, it looks like there's another character assassination going on.
And so we move to today's El Mundo. The Madrid based newspaper, not to be confused with Mundo Deportivo, is one of the best selling in Spain and in the lifestyle section today they explain that there was more behind Ozil's fall from Real Madrid grace than meets the eye. To put it bluntly, they claim the footballer was putting it about a bit, and this harmed his training and ultimately led to him becoming a player the club were happy to sell.
Ozil is now in a settled relationship but El Mundo even doubt the suitability of that and reckon that the seeds were already sewn and after his last serious relationship ended, he exploded into bachelor life. They say he had a series of dalliances which were difficult to combine with life as a dedicated athlete.
El Mundo claim it was Joachim Löw who first got worried and notified Real Madrid of what he thought were fitness problems. He had one particular girlfriend who he would meet in Milan or Paris and Löw thought these meetings and the travel was becoming a problem.
According to the newspaper Ozil was warned by Mourinho and he tried to talk him out of seeing the girl involved. It's claimed that Mourinho knew all about this particular lady, having heard of her when he was coaching Inter Milan. We're not going to be as blunt as they were, but you get the picture.
It's also claimed, and we have no idea how they'd know, that Arsenal asked Ozil to live somewhere other than the place he has chosen, Chelsea, but that his latest girlfriend insisted.
It's clear what's trying to be done here. Real Madrid players aren't saints and they never have been. If trying to paint Ozil as a greedy money-grabber didn't do the trick then they could hope this will, they shouldn't hold their breath.
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