Turkish FA president Demiroren defends Arsenal star Ozil

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He added that Ozil's critics "could not stomach" the photograph of the soccer star and Erdogan that prompted criticism ahead of the World Cup. "That is not why I play football, and I will not sit back and do nothing about it. Racism should never, ever be accepted".

"Neither the national coach nor I were informed in advance", Loew's agent Harun Arslan confirmed to German daily Bild.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel "respects" the Turkish-German footballer Mesut Ozil's decision to quit from the national team, her spokeswoman said yesterday.

Notable absentees from the voices of support for Ozil came in the form of the German national team players.

Patrice Evra, who had his own clashes with senior management during his global career with France, which included being stripped of Les Bleus' captaincy as the result of a mutiny at the 2010 World Cup, went one further, tweeting: "Respect".

Asked if Ozil would be missed, Matthaus told ESPN FC: "No, we have a lot of good players, and when some player cannot perform like before, we have option to give the new generation the chance to help us to make the results like, for example, 2014".

"He is trying to divert attention away from the real issue, the issue of racism and discrimination in Germany, which is resurging once again within everyday German society".

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31-year-old Boateng featured alongside Ozil in Germany's U-21 team, before opting to represent Ghana at senior level.

The Nigeria global scored three times and assisted five in 26 Premier League games last season.

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

Speaking to Anadolu Agency, Ozalan from the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party, said: "I congratulate Mesut Ozil. Not only is he a disgrace to yourself, but also and more importantly a shame to German football and the people of Germany".

Earlier on Monday, Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness accused Ozil of "playing crap for years" and failing to "win a tackle since the 2014 World Cup".

Leon Goretzka, 23, Lars Stindl, 29, and Thomas Mueller, 28, have also played well for Germany in the attacking midfield role.

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