Arsene Wenger has admitted he was surprised to see his Arsenal star Mesut Ozil omitted from the PFA Team of the Year.
The German midfielder has been the Premier League leader for assists this season, laying on 18 goals for his team-mates, while chipping in with six goals himself, but was left out of the selected XI.
Ozil’s assists tally is six better than the next best Christian Eriksen, who has 12 for Tottenham.
Leicester City’s N’Golo Kante was preferred alongside Tottenham’s Dele Alli, while Dimitri Payet from West Ham and Kante’s team-mate Riyad Mahrez were also selected in a four-man midfield.
Wenger said he was shocked that a player who was the league’s best provider was overlooked by his peers.
“It’s a surprise to me. It’s the players who vote. I don’t know why they didn’t pick him,” he said after Arsenal’s 2-0 win over West Brom.
“When you are top of the assists usually that’s a sign of quality which means you should get a place in the top team.”
The team featured just one Arsenal player, with Hector Bellerin getting the nod at right-back.
“The positive of the season is that Hector has been consistent,” Wenger said.