Lukas Podolski claims he did not want to leave Arsenal in 2015, with the World Cup winner seeing his hand forced by a lack of regular game time.
The Gunners were considered to have pulled off quite a coup when luring the German forward to Emirates Stadium in 2012.
A prolific strike rate at Cologne, and for his country, had made the powerful frontman a much sought-after asset.
Arsenal welcomed his arrival, but often struggled to find the best role for him.
He was restricted to just 39 Premier League starts across three years as a result, with Podolski eventually heading to Inter on loan before sealing a permanent switch to Galatasaray.
The 34-year-old says his intention was always to spend longer in north London, but ambition ultimately forced him to walk away from Arsene Wenger’s squad.
Podolski told Arsenal Player: "There are always some things.
"You weren't happy because you're not playing, maybe the coach isn't happy because you're not playing how he wants, maybe he sees another player above you?
"I don't know. I had some games I played very well, I scored goals or played well and the next match I was sitting on the bench again. That's why I started thinking, 'I'm going to have to change this situation'.
"I was thinking I was ready for Arsenal, I was thinking I was ready for the starting XI or to come on earlier but it was not like that.
"For any reason it sometimes happens like that in football or sport and that's why I decided to move. This is life, this is sport, I didn't want to but I had to because I wanted to play football. I wanted to be on the pitch but I would have loved to stay at Arsenal for a couple more years because I felt really great there.
"The team, the stuff around the team and everyone at the club was so friendly - like a family. Great fans, great city, the stadium - everything! I really enjoyed it but in the end it is like it is.
"I had some talks with Arsene about my situation and I told him, 'I want to play, I want to come on earlier' and of course, he's the coach, he has to decide, he can't promise players a bonus or to always play. No coach gives you that. So I decided for myself to move forward."
Podolski took in 82 appearances for Arsenal in total, with 31 goals recorded across those outings.