At 42.4million pounds, Ozil's a steal for Arsenal
Gunners sign Real Madrid's midfield maestro for half of what Spanish giants spent on Gareth Bale
New Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil has no doubts he can take his game to a whole new level at the Emirates Stadium to repay the faith of Gunners boss Arsene Wenger. The 24-year-old Germany international completed a club-record transfer from Real Madrid late on Monday evening, for a fee believed to be 42.4million pounds.
Ozil revealed once it was clear he no longer figured in the first-team plans of Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti following the world-record signing of Gareth Bale from Tottenham, that he had no hesitation in moving on to a fresh challenge at Arsenal, where he is set to become an integral part of Wenger’s team alongside Jack Wilshere, Theo Walcott and Santi Cazorla.
However, the German’s arrival could pose problems for Wenger because of the effect of his salary on the club’s wage structure. Speaking to the German Football Association’s official website, www.dfb.de, Ozil said: “At the weekend, I was certain that I would stay at Real Madrid, but afterwards I realised that I did not have the faith from the coach or the bosses.
I am a player who needs this faith and that is what I have felt from Arsenal, which is why I have joined. “I am really looking forward to it because I have the faith of the coach. I had spoken to him at length on the telephone, he explained his plans and that he has faith in me — that is what I need as a player.
“I am looking forward to the new challenge there (Arsenal). I have already heard that they have super fans, the city is great and the team is
fantastic. “Wenger gives me the faith and I can develop further. I know what I can do and I know that I could make the grade with any club in the world because I am so convinced in myself, but if I don’t feel people have faith in me, then that is why I had to leave and at Arsenal, I feel I have this fully.
“I am sure the new coach is going to develop me further and I am also really looking forward to playing in the Premier League.” Ozil completed the terms of his transfer while away on international duty with Germany in Munich ahead of their World Cup qualifier with Austria, as Wenger finally delivered a marquee signing — and a player he had tracked ever since he impressed at Werder Bremen.
Before Sunday’s 1-0 win over big-spending Tottenham, Wenger had seen moves for Gonzalo Higuain, Luis Suarez and Yohan Cabaye all fail to materialise, and only secured the free transfers of Yaya Sanogo and Mathieu Flamini, before a loan move for Palermo goalkeeper Emiliano Viviano was completed on deadline day.
The arrival of the third-generation Turkish-German playmaker Ozil comes in a deal worth the best part of 200,000 pounds per-week at nearly treble the previous record transfer fee paid for Andrey Arshavin to Zenit St Petersburg in January 2009.