National team: Integration Commissioner criticizes DFB for dealing with Mesut Özil

The integration officer warns against the exclusion of players with immigrant backgrounds. The Turkish community feels reminded of the AfD by the DFB.

National team: Integration Commissioner criticizes DFB for dealing with Mesut Özil

The federal government's integration commissioner criticized DFB president Reinhard Grindel and team manager Oliver Bierhoff for ir statements about national players Mesut Özil. Annette Widmann-Mauz told Süddeutsche Zeitung: "In this heated debate, I advise all those involved to talk to each or instead of one anor." The legitimate criticism of players ' behaviour must not be a lump-sum exclusion of players with a migrant background.

The background is discussion about a visit of Turkish-born national players Ilkay Gündoğan and Mesut Özil to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. Gündoğan had called Erdoğan "my President". In following debate, Grindel and Bierhoff had gone into interviews at a distance to Özil.

Gabriel Sofuoglu, chairman of Turkish community in Germany, also reproached DFB head: usage and Bierhoffs contributions "remind of attitude of right-wing populist AfD to make people with foreign roots to scapegoats for everything possible. Özil is apparently to be made scapegoat for early departure of national team at World Cup, "said Sofuoglu.

While Gündoğan has taken a public position on photographs made in May, Özil is silent. The Gündoğan-born in Gelsenkirchen had said that he had a strong connection with Turkey. "But that does not mean that we have ever said that Mr Steinmeier is not our federal president or Mrs Merkel not our chancellor."

Date Of Update: 14 July 2018, 12:02

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