Paper News and Gossip: Mesut Ozil Is Arsenal Casualty, Wayne Rooney on Captaincy

Ian Rodgers@irodgers66World Football Staff WriterMarch 12, 2014

Paper News and Gossip: Mesut Ozil Is Arsenal Casualty, Wayne Rooney on Captaincy

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    Arsenal's failure to progress beyond Bayern Munich in the Champions League leads the back-page agenda on Wednesday.

    The 3-1 aggregate defeat to the European champions was compounded by a hamstring injury to Mesut Ozil, although one report says that could be a blessing in disguise.

    Manchester United and England striker Wayne Rooney wants to captain club and country, as he admits the success of another Premier League team is hurting him and the Old Trafford side.

    Who else is making the headlines on Wednesday? Read on to find out more.

Mesut Ozil out for a 'Few Weeks,' Arsene Wenger Slams Arjen Robben

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    Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil was the biggest casualty of the Champions League exit at the hands of Bayern Munich on Tuesday, reports John Cross of the Daily Mirror.

    The Germany international was withdrawn from the second leg at half-time in the Allianz Arena, and Gunners boss Arsene Wenger claims a hamstring injury will keep him out of action for a "few weeks."

    He has a hamstring problem that looks quite serious.

    I don't know how long he will be out for. For sure, he is out of Spurs.

    We have to make a scan tomorrow to see how bad it is but he is out at least for a few weeks. I hope it's not too bad.

    Neil Ashton of the Daily Mail claims the loss of Ozil will not hurt Arsenal in a withering assessment of the player's display against Bayern.

    Ashton also reported that Wenger took aim at Bayern star Arjen Robben, calling him a "great diver." The Holland international later returned fire on the Gunners boss, claiming his comments lacked class. 

Rooney Wants Captaincy for Club and Country, but Unhappy at Rivals' Success

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    Manchester United and England striker Wayne Rooney is desperate to captain both club and country, reports Neil Custis of The Sun (subscription required).

    The 28-year-old looks set to be handed the Old Trafford armband in the summer when Nemanja Vidic leaves the club, but he is also eyeing the international captaincy as Steven Gerrard approaches the end of his career, claims the article.

    Rooney is quoted as saying:

    I’ve captained a few times for United and if the  manager wants me to be captain, I’d have no problem with that. I’d grab it with both hands.

    You don’t know what Steven (Gerrard) is going to do in the summer, only he knows.

    It’d be a great honour to captain my country but, again, it’s the manager’s call and I’m sure he’ll have a few contenders.

    With United stumbling, the former Everton striker has not been enjoying the rise of Liverpool and Manchester City this season, according to Custis.

    Rooney is quoted as saying:

    To see City doing well, and particularly Liverpool, is really difficult. 

    It’s not nice when we know we are capable of being up there challenging and we haven’t been doing that this season. 

    However, it means we have to step up and get back up there because the feeling we’ve had this season is not a nice feeling at all to have. 

    We have to keep working, keep progressing and finish the season stronger.

Vincent Kompany Calls on Spirit of QPR Victory for Barcelona Tie

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    Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany has called on his team-mates to recreate the spirit of the 2012 Premier League title win when they line up against Barcelona in the Champions League, reports David McDonnell of the Daily Mirror.

    City are chasing a two-goal deficit at the Camp Nou on Wednesday, but the Belgium international believes the last-minute victory against Queens Park Rangers on the final day of the 2011-12 campaign can inspire Manuel Pellegrini's team.

    Kompany is quoted as saying:

    It's a one-off, yes, but football is made for nights like this.

    If anything gives you belief in terms of chasing lost causes, then it should be that win over QPR.

    Our team is stronger now than it was then and we're here to try to have one of those great nights. Emotionally it's a tough ask, but emotionally you won't beat QPR how we did. 

Arsene Wenger 'Not Interested' in Bringing Robin Van Persie Back to Arsenal

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    Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has no interest in taking Robin van Persie back to the Emirates Stadium, reports John Cross of the Daily Mirror.

    According to the article, the Manchester United striker has been linked with a sensational return to the Gunners after leaving the North London club in 2012.

    However, Cross claims that the Arsenal boss will not be looking to bring the Holland international back in the summer.

    Cross writes:

    The Manchester United striker could be on the move this summer and has been heavily linked with a return to the Emirates.

    But it is understood that the Gunners boss has ruled it out even though agents are trying to push a deal.

    The Frenchman recently refused to comment on it publicly when quizzed which only heightened the speculation. 

Football Association Considers Longer Ban for Newcastle Manager Alan Pardew

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    The Football Association is considering an appeal against the suspension levied on Newcastle manager Alan Pardew to increase the ban, report Matt Lawton and Colin Young of the Daily Mail.

    The Magpies boss was given a seven-match ban by an FA disciplinary panel, which includes a three-game stadium suspension, leaving the governing body frustrated at their own disciplinary process.

    Pardew received his ban for an altercation with Hull City midfielder David Meyler during the Premier League match at the KC Stadium earlier this month.

    The Newcastle manager is also considering imposing a touchline ban on himself by watching matches from the stands for the rest of the season, reports David Coverdale of The Sun (subscription required). 

World Cup Stadium Arena Amazonia Opening in Manaus Ends in 'Shambles'

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    The opening of the Arena Amazonia in Manaus became farcical, according to a report by Ed Riley of the Daily Star.

    Situated in the north of Brazil, where England will open their 2014 World Cup campaign against Italy, the stadium hosted supporters for the first time for a test event.

    According to the article, fans were left frustrated by "leaks in the roof, unfinished toilets, tickets sold for non-existent seats and 30-minute queues to buy food," while supporters in wheelchairs complained that they could not reach their seats.

    England will line up against the Italians in the Arena Amazonia on June 14. 

Bits and Pieces: Samuel Eto'o, Ronald Koeman, Charlton Athletic, Younes Kaboul

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    Chelsea striker Samuel Eto'o has hinted at extending his stay at the Stamford Bridge club, reports Gary Jones of the Daily Star.

    The Cameroon international, who turned 33 this week, is currently on a one-year contract. However, he could now lengthen his spell with the Blues, claims the report.

    Feyenoord head coach Ronald Koeman is interested in taking over at Swansea City in the summer, reports Andrew Gwilym of the Daily Star.

    The former Holland international will leave the Rotterdam club at the end of the season, and he is looking at the Premier League club as a potential destination, claims the article.

    Martin Samuel of the Daily Mail has launched a blistering attack on Charlton Athletic owner Roland Duchatelet over the sacking of Chris Powell.

    Tottenham Hotspur's appeal against the dismissal of defender Younes Kaboul in the defeat at Chelsea on Saturday has been successful, reports Alex Richards of the Daily Mirror.

    Manchester United will allow striker Javier Hernandez to leave the club in the summer, claims Jack Wilson of the Daily Star