The Arsenal star has come under attack from former German international Mario Basler and World Cup winning captain Lothar Matthaus after his miserable display in Sunday’s shock defeat to Mexico.
Basler – scorer of Bayern Munich’s opening goal in their 1999 Champions League final defeat to Manchester United – said: “I have to say it over and over again, Ozil is an overrated footballer.
“His body language is that of a dead frog.
“If you look at the Mexico game and the way he has defended as a so-called leader, that was pathetic. It was like ‘there, please take the ball and shoot’. That’s not defence.
“Ozil hides. Even in 2014 he was only a follower. He did relatively little to make us world champions.
“As he plays at the moment he does not help the team to defend the title. And why Jogi Low always puts up with him is a mystery.
“In a big game you will see nothing of Mesut Ozil. He scored against Luxembourg, but against big teams he does not.”
Italia ‘90 winner Matthaus added: “He plays without any fire.
“I have the feeling that Ozil is not comfortable in the DFB jersey, is not free – it’s almost as if he does not want to play at all. There is no heart, no joy, no passion.
“For one or two years, Ozil has played at a level that does not justify Jogi Low’s free ticket.”
The reigning champions face Sweden in a must-win game on Saturday.
But German general manager Oliver Bierhoff leaped to the defence of Ozil yesterday.
He said: “It is only natural we are criticised after a defeat that’s the way things. But we shouldn’t get worked up about one person’s opinion.
“Much of the criticism we get is justified but it doesn’t just affect Ozil, it affects others. I’m all for judging players toughly. But when it gets unfair, it’s unfair. That’s the word I’d use.
“Jogi was obviously adjudged by the media to be too loyal to the old guard but it’s really for the coaches to decide if changes are required.
“I wouldn’t pin down this criticism on Ozil and Sami Khedira. There were several players who under-performed. More than those two.
“Jogi Low knows full well their value and that he can rely upon them. We also have young and hungry ones waiting in the wings.”