MX23RW : Sunday, August 19 20:51:26

Mesut Ozil announces Germany retirement following "racism and disrespect"

Germany midfielder Mesut Ozil announces his retirement from international duty and blames a culture of "racism and disrespect" on his decision to hang up his boots.

Germany midfielder Mesut Ozil has announced his retirement from international football following a period of "racism and disrespect" from officials and fans.

The 29-year-old was heavily criticised by some fans for his performances at the World Cup, as the 2014 winners failed to make it out of their group.

Ozil was also panned by the German Football Association (DFB), media and politicians for meeting Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan along with teammate Ilkay Gundogan before the World Cup.

The Arsenal man posted three open letters to social media on Sunday which issued a stern rebuttal of his treatment and concluded with his resignation from the Mannschaft setup.

"It is with a heavy heart and after much consideration that because of recent events, I will no longer be playing for Germany at international level whilst I have this feeling of racism and disrespect," wrote Ozil.


"I used to wear the German shirt with such pride and excitement but now I don't. This decision has been extremely difficult to make because I have always given everything for my teammates, the coaching staff and the good people of Germany.

"But when high-ranking DFB officials treat me as they did, disrespect my Turkish roots and selfishly turn me into political propaganda, then enough is enough. That is now why I play football, and I will not sit back and do nothing about it. Racism should never, ever be accepted."

Ozil has won 92 caps for Germany since his debut in 2009, scoring 23 goals in the process.

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Mesut Ozil in action for Germany against Austria on June 2, 2018
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