Arsenal smashed their transfer record to land £42.4 million-man Mesut Ozil on transfer deadline day - but now the player is claiming the Gunners could have signed him for free.
Arsene Wenger spent big to bring the German international to the Emirates, with the Arsenal faithful having been calling on their French boss to splash the cash for some time.
And having finally answered their prayers, it now transpires that the significant outlay was for nothing, with Ozil telling a German newspaper that the Gunners needn't have spent all that money to secure his signature.
A phone call with Wenger was all it took to convince Ozil that a move to the Emirates was in his best interests, with Ozil insisting that the transfer fee was completely out of his hands.
"In some way, that conversation flicked a switch in me and made me realise what I had lost at Madrid: transparency, trust, respect," Ozil told German paper Die Welt.
"He [Wenger] told me exactly how he saw me, how he wanted to use me, what he expected of me.
"I can not do anything about the transfer fee. I would have come for free, too."
Arsenal pulled off something of a coup in landing Ozil, with the 24-year-old midfielder providing more assists for his teammates than any other player in Europe's top five leagues in the past three seasons.
And the Emirates faithful will be looking forward to getting a glimpse of Ozil in an Arsenal shirt, with the visit of Stoke likely to be the first opportunity for Gooners to see their record signing in action.
Mark Hughes' men visit the Emirates Stadium on September 22.
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