Arsenal v Bayern Munich: Lukas Podolski is 'lazy' and Mesut Ozil needs to bulk up, says Markus Babbel

Former Bayern Munich and Liverpool defender has harsh words for the Gunners

Markus Babbel, the former Liverpool and Bayern Munich defender,claims that Arsenal will be no match for Bayern, and offered some backhanded complements for the Gunners' German contingent.

Babbel, who has been out of work since he was sacked as 1899 Hoffenheim manager in December 2012,  says that Arsenal have not improved from last season, when they lost 3-3 on aggregate in the Champions League round of 16.

Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger said that Arsenal were in a "better shape" than last year, but Babbel replied in Munich newspaper Muncher Merkur that the Champions league holders "won't have any problems" in taking care of the Premier League side.

Read more: Arsenal v Bayern Munich match preview
Ozil can punish Bayern - Lahm
10 most dangerous Bayern Munich players
Clean sheet top priority for Wenger
Arsenal have learned from last season's exit - Wilshere
Podolski is lazy and Ozil needs to bulk up
Arsenal lacked belief last season - Wenger
Lehmann offers £2,000 reward for missing bag
Ramsey given green light to step up recovery
Mertesacker labels Bayern 'untouchable'
Wenger faces selection dilemma
Bayern a bigger deal than Mourinho

"They are not better than last year and have many injuries," Babbel, who joined Liverpool from Bayern Munich in 2000, said. "If Bayern remain concentrated, Arsenal will not be problem. You see it in the Premier League: against the big teams they often lose."

Of Arsenal's German players, Babbel said he was surprised of the success that Lukas Podolski has had in England, as he was "too lazy" when he played in Germany.

"[Podolski] surprises me," said the 41-year-old. "I haven't given him the credit he deserves for the success he's had in England.

"Honestly, I thought he was too lazy at Bayern Munich and Koln, but he has emerged. When he is on the pitch, he is on fire."

 

Babbel added that the defender Per Mertesacker was "not exactly brilliant" when in his first matches for the Gunners after he joined in 2011, but did admit that he has worked hard and improved.

"Mertesacker is held in unbelievably high esteem at Arsenal because he fights for his spot in the team," he added.

"At the beginning, his performance were not exactly brilliant. But he never gave up. That impresses British fans."

On Mesut Ozil, the Gunners club-record £42m signing, Babbel says that he "still needs to work on his physicality" to be a success in the Premier League.

Suggested Topics
Voices
Homeless Veterans charity auction: Cook with Angela Hartnett and Neil Borthwick at Merchants Tavern
charity appealTime is running out to secure your favourite lot as our auction closes at 2pm tomorrow
Arts and Entertainment
J Jefferson Farjeon at home in 1953
booksBooksellers say readers are turning away from modern thrillers and back to golden age of crime writing
Sport
Amir Khan is engaged in a broader battle than attempting to win a fight with Floyd Mayweather
boxing Exclusive: Amir Khan reveals plans to travel to Pakistan
News
Stacey Dooley was the only woman to be nominated in last month’s Grierson awards
mediaClare Balding and Davina McCall among those overlooked for Grierson awards
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Voices
Joseph Kynaston Reeves arguing with Russell Brand outside the RBS’s London offices on Friday
voicesDJ Taylor: The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a worker's rant to Russell Brand
News
Twitchers see things differently, depending on their gender
scienceNew study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Caroline Flack became the tenth winner of Strictly Come Dancing
tvReview: 'Absolutely phenomenal' Xtra Factor presenter wins Strictly Come Dancing final
Life and Style
A still from the 1939 film version of Margaret Mitchell's 'Gone with the Wind'
life
News
Xander van der Burgt, at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
scienceA Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
film
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'
Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

Marian Keyes

The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

Rodgers fights for his reputation

Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick