EPL: Mercenaries who can hurt

EPL: Mercenaries who can hurt
Mesut Oezil.

On the face of it, Mesut Oezil and Marouane Fellaini have little in common.

Oezil stands 1.81 metres and, on the field, his work is all about stealth and creativity. A slippery kind of beauty.

Fellaini towers above him, and above most players in the world. He measures up to 1.94m tall, not counting the guardsman's helmet of black hair on the top of his head.

And while Fellaini can play, he has no qualms about using his physical size, elbows and all, in the heat of the contest.

"Felli is not someone you want to be playing against," is how David Moyes put it. The Scot managed and mentored the Belgian at Everton, before making the big man his top priority signing when he moved to Manchester United.

The pass master Oezil and the combative Fellaini were the biggest last-minute signings of the English summer. Arsenal broke their previous tight-fisted piggy bank to meet Real Madrid's £42.5 million (S$85 million) valuation for Oezil, and literally minutes before the window shut, Everton tweaked £27.5 million out of United for Fellaini.

And then, typical of the way that football operates these days, they saw nothing of their new purchases for a fortnight. Oezil was on duty for Germany, Fellaini for Belgium in World Cup qualifiers.

No sooner did Oezil fly in to London than he, together with his fellow German national-team player Per Mertesacker, reported sick.

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