A German-born son of a Turkish immigrant, Ozil brings finesse and improvisation to the midfield of both club and country. His magical left-foot can open any door, though he can be inconsistent at times.
Ozil was born in the old Ruhr mining town of Gelsenkirchen and spent his formative years at leading local outfit Schalke. On making the first team there, he was described as 'the next big thing', but he eventually fell out with club management and moved on to Bremen in January 2008.
Starring in the Bundesliga and with the Germany Under-21 side saw him make the step up and the 2010 World Cup in South Africa ensured that he was placed among Europe's top young talents, with Real Madrid wasting little time in signing him ahead of the 2010-11 season.
Strengths: His control on the ball is excellent, has great vision and can unlock a defence with his creativity. Also boasts a powerful shot from distance.
Weaknesses: Sometimes inconsistent, he can go missing and does not have great physical power.
Career high: The 2010 World Cup saw him star in the 4-1 win over England.
Career low: The 2009 UEFA Cup final, as his Werder Bremen side went down 2-1 to Shakhtar Donetsk after extra-time.
Style: Skilful, creative, an impressive flair midfielder.
Quotes: ''We in Germany are prone to rave about foreign players. We praise Wayne Rooney to the heavens, likewise (Cristiano) Ronaldo or Messi. But we have our own Messi. Our Messi is Ozil.'' Germany Under-21 manager Horst Hrubesch, 2009.
Trivia: His nickname in Bremen was "der Neue Diego" (the next Diego) after his Brazilian predecessor. One may argue that he has surpassed his achievements.