MUNICH: Germany coach Joachim Loew has ruled out Mesut Ozil’s return to the national team following the player’s retirement from international soccer.
Loew says Ozil “clearly resigned so it’s not an issue.”
Ozil, who made 92 appearances for Germany, quit the national team in July following the furor over his photo with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and accused the German soccer federation, its president, fans and media of racism against people with Turkish roots.
The Arsenal midfielder said he felt he was being made a scapegoat for Germany’s embarrassing World Cup exit. However, he appeared to keep the door open to a return when he said he would never play for the team “as long as I have this feeling of racism and a lack of respect.”
Loew previously said Ozil had not informed him of his intention to retire and that he tried several times to reach him by telephone but without success.
Loew says “Mesut decided to go another way.” —AP