Creativity is the enemy of stagnation.

Football requires opportunities in a game. Without these, then each match will descend into a miasma of mistakes and tackles, mired midfield play and precious little action for us fans.

Goalmouth action makes games, and for these to occur, you need players who create that action.

At Arsenal, we have a player who is among the finest at doing just that. Mesut Ozil at this current moment however, is fighting to get into the team, never mind create enough chances for our forwards to score.

The German has struggled since Unai Emery’s arrival, and despite the regular fitness issues, Ozil has failed to nail down a regular place in the side. Emery has put his stamp on the team, and it has answered the question many ask - “How would we cope without our star player?””

The answer, is a mixed one.

We have found a way to win without the openings Ozil creates. With Aubameyang and Lacazette, there will always be occasions when these players can carve chances by themselves, such is their skill level.

Then, we have the intermittent talents of Iwobi and Mkhitaryan. Both have shown flashes this season, slowly picking up the new instructions that Emery and his methods have brought in. They have both contributed assists and goals, Iwobi especially, but consistency has been hard to find. This could be down to form, striving for rhythm thanks to being left out of the side at times, all manner of things.

Ultimately though, is that neither are capable of what Ozil does.

Ozil is low on numbers this season, but if you watch a full match back at your leisure, and focus your intent on the oft-ill German, you will see what he is responsible for.

He is the catalyst and often the delivery boy, slipping in the pass that is the final passage of play before a goal. It is his deft touches around the box that baffle defenders, creating that space that our attackers thrive on.

He is involved heavily, and gives us the invention we crave. Does his current level of intervention deserve what he earns? Of course not, but does any player receive so much scrutiny over their wage? There is a lot of negative bias that follows his every move, so don’t be fooled. Ozil is pure pedigree.

It shouldn’t leave us unable to criticise his performances though. At times this season, he deserved to be dropped from the team. He is not doing quite enough to justify himself right now, but one thing is for sure - he needs to start games.

We are stronger with him in the side, like it or not. There will come a moment in every game when his genius is the only thing capable of creating an opening, and one thing is for sure - he has a better chance of making the difference we need when he is on the pitch as opposed to on the bench.

There are evident difficulties with Emery and the new regime - his recent knee injury may not have been as serious as it appeared - but Emery needs a fully-fit Ozil.

Ozil is fit now, let us hope he gets a run and starts to remind everyone what he is capable of.