Mesut Ozil will play again “when he can give his best,” Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has said.
Ozil was excluded from Wednesday’s 3-0 loss away to Manchester City in the Premier League.
Probed about the omission, Arteta said it was for “tactical reasons.”
But he has now revealed the German World Cup winner will only taste action when he can his best.
I’ve been very open with Mesut from day one,” said Arteta.
“I thought he was fit and willing and wanted to perform at the level he can do. I think he has played every game with me.
“The moment I see he is ready to do that again I will treat him like everyone else. I have been more than fair with him and he has responded in many games, the way I want. That’s it.
“A lot has happened to him in the last few weeks and I have to respect the timing of every player. Sometimes they need a little bit of time.
“It has been difficult preparation in the last two months to get players ready.
“Again, I am the first one who wants Mesut at his best. I will put him on the pitch when I think he can give his best.”
When asked how Ozil reacted to being omitted, Arteta replied: “He was very well with me. There were no issues at all.
“My conversation with Mesut is going to remain with him and me. It was a clear and honest conversation.”