REVEALED: Ozil could have joined United, just hours before his £42.5m deadline day switch to Arsenal
Mesut Ozil could still have become a Manchester United player hours before the transfer window closed on deadline day and the Real Madrid star made a £42.5million move to Arsenal.
The Ozil drama came at the end of a chaotic window for United and their new manager David Moyes in which the Premier League champions tried and failed with a scattergun approach to signing some of Europe’s top midfielders.
MailOnline can reveal that Ozil’s father and advisor Mustafa is taking legal action against an agent over what he claims is a forged mandate offering the Germany international to United on August 7.
However, a genuine mandate signed by him was presented to the club in mid-August but United decided not to go ahead with the deal after taking 48 hours to consider the offer.
It is understood that Moyes was looking for a midfield general and was not convinced that Ozil’s style fitted the type of domineering player he needed.
United were already preparing a bid for Roma’s Daniele De Rossi and also tried for Athletic Bilbao midfielder Ander Herrera and Ozil’s Real Madrid teammate Sami Khedira on deadline day before signing Marouane Fellaini from Everton for £27m in the final hour.
It has emerged, however, that there was interest from Real in reviving the Ozil deal until late on deadline day.
Even though he had passed a medical for Arsenal while on international duty in Munich and flown to London to complete the transfer, Real were prepared to do a deal with United as late as 8pm with Ozil understood to prefer a move to Old Trafford.
However, contrary to reports today, although United considered the offer they did not attempt to hijack his move to Arsenal with a late bid.
Instead they used the ongoing contact between the two clubs to make a last-minute move for Khedira – as well as Real left-back Fabio Coentrao – after deciding against activating the £36m release clause in Herrera’s contract at Bilbao.
Both moves failed with Madrid pulling the plug on Coentrao’s move when their chosen replacement, Guilherme Siqueira from Granada, joined Benfica instead.
Missed targets: Along with Ozil, Moyes was keen to secure Sami Khedira (left) or Daniele De Rossi (right)
Moyes and Old Trafford chief Ed Woodward then turned to their back-up option in Fellaini and pushed through his move from Everton.
It left United supporters somewhat underwhelmed and the club under fire for failing to be more decisive about their transfer targets.
Worse still, Ozil’s magnificent start in helping Arsenal to the top of the Premier League has contrasted with Fellaini’s early appearances and United’s worst league start for 24 years, and the fact that the Belgian now faces a seven-week layoff with a wrist injury.
However, Moyes remains determined to add two more midfielders – possibly not until next summer – with Herrera still high on his list.