German international spoke to Gunners before Real switch.
Mesut Ozil has revealed Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger tried to sign him from Werder Bremen in 2010 but says he opted for Real Madrid.
The German international, then 21, was hot property after a series of stunning displays at the 2010 World Cup and Barcelona, Manchester United and Arsenal were all reportedly interested in his services.
Ozil eventually joined Real, where he spent three seasons before his club-record £42.3m move to Arsenal this summer, but the 25-year-old has revealed he first spoke to Wenger back in 2010.
“I had long conversations with Wenger before I joined Real and that’s how I got to know about Arsenal, and the way that they like to sign talented players who can move the ball well,” Ozil told The Guardian.
“That’s really important for me. In the end, I did decide to go to Real and I had three wonderful years there. I had a great manager in José Mourinho, who really helped me. He was always there when I needed him.
“I’m really proud to be here now and the most important thing was the trust that the boss put in me. He convinced me to sign and I could not be any happier to be here. This has really been the perfect step for me. Wenger is one of the best managers. This is why we are so successful and why we are on a good path.”
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