Mesut Ozil called Arsene Wenger to get move to Arsenal from Real Madrid
Mesut Ozil has revealed he put in a call to Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger in 2010 to set his transfer from Real Madrid in motion.
Ozil, 28, left Real Madrid for Arsenal in 2013 for a fee of £42.4 million after spending three years at the Bernabeu.
In his upcoming autobiography, being serialised in Bild, Ozil reveals that he never had any intention of leaving Real Madrid until his father fell out with president Florentino Perez during contract talks.
The led to him contacting Wenger about a move, who had attempted to sign him in 2010 when the player option to join Madrid from Werder Bremen.
"Even though it wasn't easy for me at the start, I dialled a number I had in my cell since 2010," Ozil wrote. "''Mr. Wenger,' I said. 'I promised to contact you first if there would be the opportunity that I am looking for a new club. It's here now.'
"The transfer from Real Madrid to Arsenal was the most difficult decision of my career."
Ozil has also revealed that Jose Mourinho once accused him of being a "coward" and "too nice to tackle" in a dressing room argument during their time at Real Madrid.
Although Ozil felt his journey at Real wasn't over, Wenger convinced him.
"There was this man with the calm voice, the winning manner and the smart words which showed that he really wanted me on his team," Ozil added. "Wenger scouted me for three years and gave me a much better feeling than Carlo Ancelotti did at Real at that time."
Ozil explained how a breakdown in the relationship between his father, who represented him at the time, and the club led to his departure.
"Nobody expected that a change of clubs was due," Ozil said. "My father and I both had the goal to prolong this success story at the Blancos by a few years and finally also win the Champions League.
"It wasn't about greed. It was only about an adequate salary. And that didn't reflect in Real's first offer."
Yet, although Ozil knew it was all part of contract negotiations, his father could not handle the pressure of the situation.
He said: "He [his father] did not have the experience of a dozen negotiations with big club bosses, and that's why he, to be honest, lacked the serenity to adequately deal with such a provoking offer."
Instead of going through with the talks, Ozil wrote that his father remained "stubborn" and made a huge mistake when walking out on Perez.
"It was certainly not right to leave the office fuming mad, and slamming the door to Perez's business room with a bang," Ozil said. "I couldn't envisage that it could have consequences for me.
"But I fell out of favour with the club bosses despite not doing anything. I feared being sat in the stands. And suddenly I needed to act for my career. To no longer play at all was no question for me."
The incident led to his Ozil and his father falling out at the time.
"It was shortly before my 25th birthday that I told him of my decision to no longer be represented by him," he added. "It was difficult."
Stephan Uersfeld is the Germany correspondent for ESPN FC. Follow him on Twitter @uersfeld.