Mesut Ozil has revealed that he joined Real Madrid ahead of Barcelona due to Jose Mourinho’s attitude in showing him some of the most beautiful places at the club.
Bursting onto the scene with Schalke in 2006, Ozil became a certified Bundesliga star when he joined Werder Bremen in 2008.
But it was his epic performances for Germany at the 2010 World Cup which secured a £13million move to Real Madrid that same summer.
However, it could all have been very different if the then Barcelona manager Guardiola had made a bit more effort to meet him.
Speaking to Marca about his exit from Werder Bremen, he revealed: “It was a decision between Real Madrid and Barcelona. And in the end it was not a matter of money.
“I don’t know if this is known, but I visited Madrid and Barcelona at that time and the difference was José Mourinho. Mou gave me a VIP visit to Real Madrid. He took me to see the stadium and all the trophies they had won. That gave me goosebumps.
“The visit to Barcelona was less enthusiastic and what was more disappointing is that Pep Guardiola didn’t bother to meet me. Before that trip I really liked Barcelona’s style of football and I could really imagine playing with them, but Madrid went all out. So José Mourinho was without a doubt the most important factor in my decision.
“After my visits, my decision was one hundred percent clear: I wanted to be a Madridista.”
Ozil also said: “The Madrid fans are really incredible. Even ten years after leaving Madrid, I continue to receive spectacular support and affection from the fans. It’s really amazing. I think we spent three very good years together, three years in which the fans enjoyed themselves and saw that I gave everything for the club. I’m going to be honest, I didn’t expect this support to continue for so long, so I can only thank the madridistas.”
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