Both Manchester clubs were given the chance to sign the German before he eventually joined the Gunners.
Arsenal’s new record signing Mesut Ozil was offered to both Manchester City and Manchester United before his eventual £42.4m move from Real Madrid to the Emirates on transfer deadline day, according to reports in the Mail on Sunday.
The coveted German international was surprisingly made surplus to requirements by the Spanish giants after they bought Tottenham Hotsour wide man Gareth Bale for a world-record sum of £85m on Sept 1, with los Blancos president Florentino Perez needing to help part-finance that deal by then selling Ozil.
However, initially the 24-year-old was offered to both Manchester giants by Ozil’s father and agent Mustafa, with both clubs understood to have been keen on signing the highly rated playmaker, that is until they learned of the size of the £5m handlers’ fee that Ozil Snr was demanding to push the transfer through.
As a result, with the minutes slowly ticking down until the summer transfer window finally slammed shut for business for the year on Sept 2, and with Ozil only prepared to leave the Santiago Bernabeu for a club competing in this season’s UEFA Champions League, Mustafa then decided to turn to Arsenal in order to broker a deal for his son.
And on this occasion Ozil Snr reduced his fixer’s fee to just £1.5m so as to facilitate the transfer, although the German still negotiated a bumper five-year contract with the north London club worth a staggering £10m a season, which equates to £200,ooo per week for the player.