London man admits trying to rob Arsenal stars

Arsenal's Mesut Ozil during the Europa League match against BATE Borisov, February 21, 2019. ― Reuters pic
Arsenal's Mesut Ozil during the Europa League match against BATE Borisov, February 21, 2019. ― Reuters pic

LONDON, Oct 3 — A man admitted in a London court today to trying to rob Arsenal footballers Mesut Ozil and Sead Kolasinac in the British capital earlier this year.

Ashley Smith, 30, of Archway in north London, pleaded guilty to attempting to steal watches from the duo in the Hampstead neighbourhood of the city on July 25.

He appeared at Snaresbrook Crown Court by video link to admit the attempted ambush of World Cup winner Ozil, 30, and 26-year-old Kolasinac.

Footage of the incident on social media showed the Bosnia defender Kolasinac, who joined Arsenal in 2017, chasing off two moped attackers who were wearing helmets and dark clothing.

The club’s former Germany midfielder Ozil can be seen in his black Mercedes sports utility vehicle before he reportedly took refuge in a Turkish restaurant.

Judge Sheelagh Canavan ordered Smith be held in custody until he is sentenced at the same court on November 1.

Jordan Northover, 26, has also been charged over the incident and is due to appear before magistrates on Friday.

The two players missed the start of the English Premier League season following the attempted robbery, amid concerns about their security, but have since returned to playing for Arsenal. — AFP

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