Erdogan says treatment of Germany's Ozil racist and unacceptable

Turkey Ex-footballer lawmaker supports Mesut Ozil

Several prominent officials in Turkey, including the head of the Turkish Football Federation Yildirim Demiroren, have thrown their support behind Ozil since he announced on Sunday that he would not play again for Germany.

Pressed on whether Ozil will be missed by Germany heading forward, 1990 World Cup victor Matthaus added: "No, we have a lot of good players, and when some player can not perform like before, we have options to give the new generation the chance to help us to make the results like, for example, 2014".

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday said he had backed Mesut Ozil's decision to quit the German national team on racism grounds in a telephone call with the Turkish-origin football star, wading into a controversy that caused uproar in Germany.

"In the eyes of Grindel and his supporters, I am German when we win, but I am an immigrant when we lose", Ozil wrote in his lengthy farewell statement.

Ozil ends his worldwide career with 92 caps, 23 goals and 40 assists, and was also a member of the squad that won the World Cup in 2014.

The Arsenal midfielder is walking away after nine years as one of Loew's most trusted players.

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Although Ozil may have found failings with his worldwide team, the player's club side Arsenal were quick to welcome the player back as he reported for training on Tuesday for the first time since the story unfolded. The treatment I have received from the (Germany Football Association) and many others makes me no longer want to wear the German national team shirt.

Leon Goretzka, 23, Lars Stindl, 29, and Thomas Mueller, 28, have also played well for Germany in the attacking midfield role.

Erdogan added: "On Monday night I spoke to Mesut". "I can clearly relate to what Mesut feels".

Ozil was part of the German team that suffered an embarrassing exit at the recent Fifa World Cup.

But Thomas Bareiss, a senior member of Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats, said it showed "disrespect" and was "misplaced", while German daily Bild said Ozil was "revelling in the victim role that has nothing to do with reality".

Fellow players have their say.

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