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German Chancellor Merkel supports Arsenal ace Ozil: He deserves respect...

German Chancellor Angela Merkel says Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil should be 'respected' for quitting the national team.

Ozil has announced his international retirement amid the pre-World Cup controversy over a photograph with the president of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

"The Chancellor values Mesut Özil very much, Mesut Özil is a fantastic football player who has done a lot for the national team," said a German government spokeswoman.

"Mesut Özil has now taken a decision that must be respected.

"Germany is a cosmopolitan country and the integration of people with immigration backgrounds is a key objective of the federal government."

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Paul Vegas

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