Arsenal were planning to sign Lazio midfielder Hernanes before they opted to move for Mesut Ozil, according to the Express.
Hernanes, a summer transfer target of Tottenham's, was the reportedly the initially favoured signature, before Arsene Wenger turned his attention to the Bernabeu and Ozil.
Ozil, who cost the Gunners £43million on deadline day, enjoyed an impressive debut during Arsenal's 3-1 away victory at Sunderland on Saturday, providing an assist for Olivier Giroud's opener, and producing an eye-catching display in the first-half.
Reports in Italy however are claiming that it was Brazilian playmaker Hernanes who Wenger had pinpointed as the desired target, but eventually moved for Ozil as soon as he became available following Madrid's capture of Gareth Bale.
Hernanes, who has scored 31 goals from midfield for Lazio, was sought after by Tottenham until they acquired Erik Lamela, and has also been eyed by Manchester City, following a run of decent performances.
The 27-year-old Brazilian is no doubt talented, but one gets the impression Arsenal fans won't be too bothered that their club chose to sign Ozil instead.