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Fenerbahce agree in principle to sign midfielder Mesut Ozil from Arsenal - Turkish media

FOOTBALL By Reuters | January 6th 2021
Arsenal's Mesut Ozil (R) celebrates with teammate Olivier Giroud after Giroud scored a goal against Newcastle United during their English Premier League soccer match at the Emirates stadium in London April 28, 2014. [Reuters, Eddie Keogh]

Fenerbahce will sign German midfielder Mesut Ozil from Arsenal for three and a half years for an undisclosed fee, Turkey’s private Demiroren news agency and other Turkish media reported on Wednesday.

While there was no immediate comment on the reports from Fenerbahce, broadcaster A Spor said Ozil and the club had agreed on the transfer in principle and that the 32-year-old would join the former Turkish champions later in January.

Fenerbahce Chairman Ali Koc said previously that signing Ozil, who has Turkish ancestry, was a “nice dream” for the club, who have suffered from financial woes in recent years. Koc had said Fenerbahce would need to offload players to make any transfers in January.

Arsenal's Mesut Ozil celebrates after scoring a goal during the English Premier League soccer match between Arsenal and Stoke City at the Emirates stadium in London, Saturday, December 10, 2016. [AP Photo, Tim Ireland]  

Ozil fuelled rumours about a move to Fenerbahce with an Instagram post about Istanbul on Tuesday. The German has not played for Arsenal since March 2020 and was not named in the squad list for the first half of the current Premier League season.

He has long been linked with a move to Fenerbahce, Turkey’s second most decorated club.

Manchester United's French defender Patrice Evra (R) vies with Arsenal's German midfielder Mesut Ozil during the English Premier League football match between Manchester United and Arsenal at Old Trafford Stadium in Manchester, northwest England, on November 10, 2013. [AFP, Paul Ellis]

Ozil, who is one of the highest-paid players at Arsenal, is out of contract at the end of the season. But the club is looking to offload players in January to trim the squad.

Last week, Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta had said the club would wait for the January transfer window to make a final call about the German national’s fate.

Arsenal are currently 11th in the standings on 23 points, while Fenerbahce are fifth in Turkey’s top tier Super Lig on 29 points, two behind league leaders Gaziantep.

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