BERNAT LÓPEZ / ©XTREMFOOTBALL
Mesut Ozil’s agent Dr Erkut Sogut has revealed that the former Germany international turned down offers of up to £1 million-a-week from Asia to commit his future to Arsenal. The 30-year-old joined Arsenal from Real Madrid in a £42.5 million deal back in 2013 and despite dividing opinion during his time in North London, he has scored 30 goals and provided 51 assists in 152 Premier League appearances.
Arsenal made Ozil the highest-paid player in their history in a £350,000-a-week deal, but is known the playmaker rejected advances from Asia worth three times that amount – around £1m-a-week.
In a rare UK interview, Ozil’s agent, Dr Erkut Sogut, outlined why the contract took so long to be agreed, but rejected claims that money was the principal stumbling block.
“We had some really big offers from Asia – there were some crazy offers”, he said. “But, for Mesut, money was by no means the biggest factor. Money is definitely one important thing to consider, but people must remember that footballing ability is just one aspect of a contract negotiation. The commercial impact of a footballer is crucial nowadays”, he added.
“Mesut has the biggest social media following of any player in the Premier League and I just read that his shirt numbers (sales) were the largest at the club. This is all information that has to be taken into consideration. So, the commercial side is very big with a player like Mesut, who has played in different countries and was the No10 of the Germany team, where he won the World Cup”, Sogut told the press.
Ozil bumped up his former pay pack of £140.000 a week to stay at Arsenal until 2021. And although it was former manager Arsene Wenger in charge when he signed the new deal, Ozil is now working under new boss Unai Emery. After a difficult start, he has now rediscovered some of his best form in North London.