Cesc Fabgregas has revealed that Mesut Ozil being at Arsenal was the reason that the Gunners did not opt to sign him over the summer.
Arsenal had first refusal on the Spanish international, but manager Arsene Wenger declined the opportunity to re-sign the midfielder as he felt that he had enough creativity in his side because of Ozil.
Fabregas made his name at Arsenal before departing three years ago to join Barcelona, and many Gunners supporters were disappointed when they allowed Chelsea to swoop in unopposed for his services when he became available this summer.
Originally it was thought that this was because Wenger had continued to show the financial prudence that he is famed for, but it seems that it was actually because of the faith that the Frenchman has in Ozil.
"Arsenal had the first option - it was written in the contract - and so they could have said 'yes' but they decided not to," The Express quotes Fabregas as saying. "They told me now Ozil was there, there was no need for me."
However, the stats over the opening period of the season suggest that Fabregas would have been a good addition at the Emirates Stadium.
Although Ozil has played in a more advanced role than Fabregas so far this season, the Spanish midfielder has outperformed the man who blocked his return to North London in almost every area.
|Position||Team||Goals||Goal Assist||Chances created||Total Pass||Passing Accuracy||Touches||Dispossessed||Appearances||Mins Played|
Ozil may have a goal to his name, but Fabregas already has racked up six assists and has forged 18 openings in total for his teammates.
He has also proven to be a more available option and shown a greater accuracy with his passing, although both possess impressive statistics in this area.
Fabregas has proved that he can play in the defensive midfield role at Chelsea, too, and although he wouldn't be the enforcer that the Gunners needed they would have been stronger with him in that role than any of their current options.
Ozil is undoubtedly a quality midfielder, but Fabregas would have provided an upgrade and would have been a good purchase for the Gunners, regardless of the creative talent they already have at their disposal.
The 27-year-old was bought for under £30 million, making him one of the bargains of the summer, and Wenger may have been better off subscribing to the notion that you can never have too much quality, if he wanted his side to compete with the very best this season.