Mesut Ozil eventually left Arsenal, completing his move to Turkish giant Fenerbahce on Sunday afternoon.
The 32-year-old has not been part of Mikel Arteta’s plans this season and has not featured for the Gunners at all, having been excluded from the official roster of players entered in all competitions.
The move was a strong indication that Ozil’s stay in north London was over, and six months later it finally turned out to be the case. The German star’s departure from Emirates Stadium was confirmed on Sunday, as his transfer to Turkish side Fenerbahce was officially announced.
In a farewell statement posted on the official Arsenal website, Ozil said: “I want to thank the club for this incredible journey over the past seven and a half years. The support I have felt from the team and the fans during my time here has been truly amazing and I will always be grateful.
“Together we have won trophies for the first time in years and created memories that will last a lifetime. The Arsenal fans will remain in my heart forever. I would like to thank Edu Gaspar for helping to provide a professional and dignified solution in the past. few days, and I wish all club members the best in their attempt to continue to bring Arsenal back to the top, to where we belong.
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta said: “Mesut’s achievements at Arsenal are undisputed. It has been a privilege to play alongside him and, more recently, to coach him.
“His creativity and vision led to many goals during his time in Arsenal jersey. Mesut has been at the heart of many great moments for this club over the years, including those three FA Cup final wins. These successes will always be part of our history. . We thank Mesut and wish him good luck with Fenerbahce.
Technical Director Edu added: “We thank Mesut for his enormous contribution to Arsenal. He has made more than 250 appearances, made three victories in the Emirates FA Cup final and has given fans and everyone at the club many wonderful moments on the pitch since joining us in 2013.
“We would like to thank Mesut and his team for their professionalism during our recent negotiations. I know that all Arsenal associates will join me in wishing Mesut and his family the best of health, success and happiness in the next chapter of his career.
The Turkish giants confirmed the deal with a simple statement, writing: “An agreement has been reached with Arsenal Football Club for the transfer of professional footballer Mesut Özil to our club”.
The attacking midfielder leaves the Gunners in a cloud of controversy, and his career at Emirates Stadium is sure to divide opinions between supporters and viewers. He had a strong start to his Premier League career and recorded the second most assists in a season, scoring 19 goals for his teammates in the 2015/16 campaign.
But his influence over the Gunners has waned in recent years and he has lost his place in the squad under Unai Emery and current coach Arteta. This resulted in his exclusion from this season’s squad, and he was reduced to supporting his teammates on Twitter.
It was reported last Saturday that Ozil and Arsenal had agreed to terminate his contract, allowing him to leave Emirates Stadium for nothing, while the club could take his huge salary out of their payroll.
And with the German heavily linked with a move to Fenerbahçe, that deal seemed to be getting closer and closer, after he tweeted the image of an hourglass, counting the minutes until his announcement was made official.
That deal finally came to fruition, which brought the curtain down on Ozil’s time at Arsenal, as he says goodbye to the Premier League and begins a new adventure in Turkey.