August 20, 2010
Being a footballer and having club loyalties can be tricky. The rival of the club you support as a fan could one day turn out to be your employer, creating an awkward position where the things you say can come back to haunt you. This is the position Mesut Ozil, Real Madrid's newest acquisition, finds himself in now.
On Ozil's website -- which, judging by the prominently displayed Werder Bremen logo, has not been updated since his move to Madrid -- he has a little Q&A section. And in that section, the very first question is, "What are your favorite clubs outside Germany?" His response? Barcelona and Fenerbahce. OK, that's all fine and good. But with that information readily available, it makes his quotes at his first Real Madrid press conference somewhat regrettable. Proclaimed Ozil (via Soccernet):
"Real Madrid is a symbol of success -- it's the best club in the world. Whoever comes here does so to win titles," he said. "I only wanted to come here. To play for Real Madrid is a special honor."
And that's why footballers should never get too carried away at their first press conference with a new club.