Former Arsenal midfielder, Mesut Ozil has praised Bukayo Saka for his courage to take responsibility for England’s penalty against Italy in the Euro 2020 final.
Saka, whose penalty miss gifted the Italians the trophy at Wembley was racially abused on social media by angry English fans.
The abuse has led to a unifying message in support of the England players, who, alongside manager Gareth Southgate, brought a real sense of excitement to the country in their bid to win the championship.
Recall that Ozil missed a crucial penalty of his own as the Gunners crashed out of the Champions League at the hands of Bayern Munich back in 2014 and he had complete sympathy for the young winger.
However, the German international has empathized with the 19-year-old over his misfortunes from the penalty spot and offered his support to Saka.
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“I felt very much for Bukayo, I know from my own experience how it feels to miss a penalty,” Ozil, who now plays for Fenerbahce, told Sky Sports.
“In a final, as the last one, to take on the responsibility of an entire nation as a young player – respect. Not many players would dare to do that.
“There will always be people who racially abuse and scapegoat people of different backgrounds and skin colour when they lose.
“Unfortunately, there will always be a small part of our community that racially insults and threatens players.
“We should focus much more on the positive messages that keep players strong.”