Mesut means ‘happy’ in Turkish and it goes without saying Germany are more than happy that this talented playmaker chose to represent the country of his birth, rather than that of his father.
When he made his decision, Ozil was forced to shut down the guestbook on his website after he was deluged with criticism from angry Turkish fans, but he shrugged off the controversy and scored in the final as Germany beat England to win 2009 Under-21 European Championship.
National team coach Joachim Loew has hailed his emergence as a “stroke of luck for German football.”
Ozil began his career with Schalke and became the most expensive teenager in German football when he moved on to Werder Bremen for 4.3m Euros. He scored the winning goal in the 2009 German Cup final win over Bayer Leverkusen and has said: “My technique and feeling for the ball is the Turkish side to my game: the discipline, attitude and always-give-your-all is the German part.”
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