Mesut Ozil says that a lack of interest shown by Pep Guardiola convinced him to reject a move to Barcelona in 2010, despite having initially set his sights on a move to Camp Nou.
The Germany international was one of the most sought after prospects in world football having played a starring role for his country at the 2010 World Cup and impressing for Werder Bremen in the Bundesliga.
Convinced of Camp Nou move
Catalan giants Barca were among the clubs showing an interest and Ozil revealed that he was convinced he would make the switch to Camp Nou.
However, the now Arsenal midfielder opted for a move to Barca's fierce rivals Real Madrid, a decision Ozil says he made due to Guardiola's attitude.
"Arsenal were interested in signing me after the 2010 World Cup, as were Manchester United, Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Real Madrid," an extract from Ozil's new book 'Die Magie des Spiels', published by Bild, reads.
"My agent sat down with Bayern to discuss a move. The club told him about their plans with me and how they intended to use me. He had similar talks with the other clubs that wanted me.
"Before I travelled to Barcelona, I was convinced that was my next club. I was leaning toward joining Barcelona. There was no team in the world that played more beautiful football.
"But Guardiola did not attend talks and he did not call me either the days after the meeting. He did not even send me a text. He did not show me that he wanted to sign me. My interest in a move to Barcelona quickly decreased."
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