Paris Saint-Germain forward Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting has shed some light on his deadline day move away from Stoke City, which was one of the most surprising transfers of the 2018 summer window.
Fans across Europe were bemused that the 29-year-old, who only scored five goals for the Potters last season, secured a late switch to the French capital where he would join the likes of Edinson Cavani, Neymar and Kylian Mbappé.
However, Choupo-Moting claims that his relationship with manager Thomas Tuchel played a huge part in the transfer, adding that he was fully focused on the new season with Stoke City before he got the call from officials in Paris.
"Thomas Tuchel had already contacted me a few months before, after the end of the season with Stoke," Choupo-Moting told Le Parisien. "We’d kept in touch since Mainz. I learnt a lot from him.
"He contacted me and asked me if I thought about playing here. Playing for him and training for him. I told him yes, of course.
Shaqiri MOTM for Liverpool, Choupo-Moting scoring for PSG, Lee Grant playing for Man Utd.— Elliot Hackney (@ElliotHackney) September 25, 2018
Try and tell me this isn't Stoke City's banter era.
"It wasn’t a sure thing. I had to wait. I was focused on my preparation with Stoke. It happened on the last day. I’m very happy that it happened. He trusts me. I’m just really happy to be here."
Former Borussia Dortmund manager Tuchel was responsible for signing Choupo-Moting during a five-year spell as the head coach at Mainz. The pair worked together for three years before eventually going their separate ways in 2014.
The Cameroon international's second spell under Tuchel has already started off on the right foot. Although Choupo-Moting is nothing more than a squad player at the Parc des Princes, the versatile forward scored his first goal in his Ligue 1 debut against Stade Rennais.