Most players who sit in the stands and do nothing but collect a giant wage tend to be hated, but even as a non-Arsenal fan it’s impossible not to warm to Mesut Ozil.
It wasn’t his fault that Mikel Arteta excluded him from the Premier League squad and he’s acted with class throughout their tough period – he could be seen cheering the team on with his social media posts and he’s never let it deteriorate into a slagging match.
There’s still no sign of him actually getting another chance at Arsenal under Arteta so a January transfer would be the best thing for everyone, so let’s have a look at the latest with his move to Fenerbahce:
Why would Ozil move to Turkey?
Although Ozil is well known for almost reaching 100 caps with Germany, he is of German descent and he’s often spoken about his love of Turkey, while his wife is is also half-Turkish and they were married in the country with President Erdogan acting as a witness.
Turkish sides have lost some of their power in recent years in the Champions League as they’ve slid into a habit of throwing big money at rejects from the bigger European sides, so you could argue that Ozil is yet another example of this.
He would be treated as a star at Fenerbahce and they would make more of an effort to build the team around him, while it’s also at a lower level and it should allow him to stand out at this stage in his career.
Has the transfer actually been agreed?
The answer to this depends on who you ask- there seems to be a race amongst Turkish journalists to announce the transfer being completed, but if you look at this sample of reports then it tells you that it’s certainly close to happening:
Mesut Özil ve Arsenal arasındaki sözleşme fesih görüşmeleri başladı.
• Mesut’un Arsenal’den 8 milyon Euro alacağı var.
— Yağız Sabuncuoğlu (@yagosabuncuoglu) January 8, 2021
✍️ Transfer tamamlandı.Dünyaca ünlü yıldız futbolcu Mesut Özil, Fenerbahçe ile 3.5 yıllık sözleşme imzaladı.
🤝Fenerbahçe camiasına hayırlı olsun
— Mert Yüksektepe (@mertyuksektepee) January 7, 2021
MESUT ÖZİL FENERBAHÇE’DE 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥
— Ahmet Selim Kul (@ahmetselimkul) January 7, 2021
Those reports offer a mix of claiming the deal is done, suggesting that Arsenal still need to sort out the €8m that’s owed to him on the remainder of his contract and just some general unbridled joy about the possibility of it going through.
It appears that the hold up in the transfer is Arsenal and Ozil coming to an agreement over the shortfall in wages that he’ll incur by leaving before the end of his deal, so expect Arsenal to subsidise his wages or pay a lump sum to get him out the door.
What’s Ozil’s Arsenal legacy?
This is a tough one to figure out because he’s been a player who often gets criticised when the team isn’t winning and he’s on the field, but then there’s a clamour for him to play when he’s left out.
He was a popular signing when he first arrived because the club were crying out for some star talent at that point, while he went on to play over 250 games for The Gunners and played a part in the team winning the FA Cup three times.
There will also be a feeling of wasted talent and wondering if he would’ve contributed more if everything was built around him, but he’s set to leave on good terms and it gives English fans a reason to pay more attention to Turkish football for a while.