Arsenal defender Nacho Monreal admits he was surprised to see Mesut Özil arrive at the club on transfer deadline day, bit is 'honoured' to count the Real Madrid star among his teammates.
Despite establishing himself as one of the most consistent performers at the Santiago Bernabeu during his time in Madrid, Özil was sold to Arsenal in a club record £42.5 million on the final day of the summer transfer window.
The deal was a coup indeed for Arsenal, and the Germany international has played a prominent role in propelling the club to the summit of the Premier League table, as they look to end a trophy drought that has lasted since 2005.
Özil's arrival gave everyone at the club something of a fillip, from the fans to the players, and Monreal was one of many who was taken aback by somewhat by Arsenal's capture of the 25-year-old playmaker.
But the Gunners full-back is delighted that Özil is among Arsene Wenger's number at the Emirates Stadium, and rates it as a privilege to play alongside the German.
Asked by Marca if he was surprised that Madrid sold Özil, Monreal said: "Personally, I think so. Mesut is a star and Real Madrid are full of stars. I didn't expect Madrid to let him go.
"For us, it's an honour to play with him."