Mesut Ozil’s time at Arsenal appears to finally be over after the midfielder reportedly agreed to join Turkish side Fenerbahce.
Ozil, who joined the Gunners from Real Madrid in 2013, has been out of Mikel Arteta’s plans since he took charge.
The door has been open for his exit since last year and Ozil has now agreed to make the move to Turkey where he has strong links.
Mesut Ozil posted this image on Tuesday, which was a throwback picture of him in Istanbul
Ozil had said he was happy to run down his contract, which was due to expire this summer
The 32-year-old has been firmly out of favour under Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta
Reports in Turkey suggest it is a ‘dream move’ for the 32-year-old who will join the 19-time Turkish league winners this month.
He has agreed a three-and-a-half year contract, which brings to an end his £350,000 per week deal at Arsenal. The Gunners will, however, pay his wages for the first six months of his Fenerbahce contract, which is worth £4.5m a year. Ozil will also receive a signing on fee of £2.2m.
Ozil, who had been in talks with US side DC United, posted a throwback picture on Tuesday night on Twitter of him in Istanbul with the caption: ‘This city.’
Ozil was left out of the official Arsenal squad for the Premier League and Europa League
Istanbul-based news outlet DHA also report that Ozil was ‘convinced’ to join Fenerbahce by Turkish media mogul and close friend Acun Ilicali.
It has also been reported that Ozil is building a luxury villa close to where Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who was also best man at the player’s wedding to Amine Gulse, lives in Istanbul.
Ozil had been firmly out of favour at the Emirates under Arteta and hasn’t played a single game all season after being left out of both official squads for the Premier League and Europa League.
Arteta hinted recently that Arsenal’s big earners would have to leave the club in January, adding: ‘We cannot sustain the numbers we have.’
Ozil had been happy to see out his current deal, which was due to expire in the summer.
Former Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger suggested Arteta should work to get the best out of Ozil
MESUT OZIL’S TIME AT ARSENAL
Signed from Real Madrid in 2013 for £42million
Premier League appearances: 184
Premier League goals: 33
Last appearance: Played 89 minutes v West Ham in the Premier League (March 7, 2020)
Honours: FA Cup (x4), Community Shield, League Cup runner-up, Europa League runner-up
Arsene Wenger, who was the manager who signed Ozil from Real Madrid in 2013 for then a club-record fee of £42million, suggested last month that Arteta should work with the midfielder to help him rediscover his best form.
Wenger worked with Ozil at Arsenal for five years – a period in which the club won the FA Cup three times – and remains the only manager at the Emirates to get the best out of the 2014 World Cup winner.
Wenger told ESPN’s Caught Offside podcast: ‘He was not difficult to manage. He was a guy who had a special quality as a creative player and needed to have fun.
‘He is an artist and these guys are a bit more sensitive. They need support and an environment that pushes them to give their best.
‘You have two ways to see a football team. You get everybody to do the same – the same intensity of work, the same defensive work – or you find a compromise.
‘You have a more creative player in the team who can do less defensive work but you build a team around him who can compensate for these deficiencies. That is what you have to think about.’