The rumors were finally squashed Sunday as reports confirmed midfielder Mesut Ozil joined Fenerbahce on a permanent deal. This came after Ozil reached a verbal agreement with Arsenal to end his contract half-a-year early. Ozil was originally signed by Arsenal from Real Madrid for £42.5 million.
“Mesut’s achievements at Arsenal are undisputed,” Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta said. “It was a privilege to play alongside him and, more recently, coach him. His creativity and vision led to many goals during his time in the Arsenal shirt.”
Ozil scored 44 goals and recorded 77 assists in 254 appearances for Arsenal. Seven-and-a-half years, including 184 Premier League appearances.
“Mesut was at the heart of many great moments for this club over the years, including those three FA Cup final wins,” Arteta added. “These successes will always be part of our history. We thank Mesut and wish him all the best with Fenerbahce.”
Ozil last appeared in a match for Arsenal on March 7, 2020 vs West Ham.
Even as recent as 2020/20201, Ozil was Arsenal’s highest-paid player at £350,000-a-week. He was still left off the 2020-2021 Premier League registered roster.
“I’d like to thank the club for this amazing journey over the past seven-and-a-half years,” Ozil said in a statement. “The support I have felt from the team and fans during my time here has been truly incredible and something I will always be grateful for. Together we won trophies for the first time in years and created memories that will last a lifetime.”
Fans will most likely remember his first three years with the club most fondly when he recorded 19 Premier League assists between 2015-2016.
Prior to the move to Turkey, some reports had indicated there was potential with D.C United in the MLS as well.
“The Arsenal fans will forever remain in my heart,” Ozil added. “I’d like to thank Edu Gaspar for helping bring about a professional and dignified solution in the past few days, and I wish everyone at the club the best in their attempt to continue to bring Arsenal back to the top, where we belong.”