Mesut Özil is set to swap Fenerbahce for Super Lig rivals Istanbul Basaksehir FK, with an official announcement already imminent.
Following initial reports of Mesut Özil’s Fenerbahce contract termination throughout Tuesday, Patrick Berger of Sport1 wrote on Tuesday night that the midfielder is terminating his contract to join Super Lig rivals Basaksehir.
Berger reports that the decision was made just hours before his post, and we should expect the official announcement soon, likely on Wednesday.
Fenerbahce publicly confirmed in early April that Özil and Ozan Tufan had both been excluded from their squad, following a decision taken by the club.
The Athletic reported that head coach Ismail Kartal made the decision, and it’s not believed to be related to on-field performance.
Instead, Football.London claimed that the exclusion was related to a verbal altercation between the two players and the Fenerbahce manager. Neither have appeared in a single matchday squad since then.
Özil was insistent at first that he wouldn’t be forced out of the club, saying as much in a statement on social media.
“Recently, I have had to make a statement regarding the allegations made about my career,” Özil began.
“I completed my career goal by signing a 3.5-year contract with Fenerbahçe, my childhood love, without even getting paid for the first 6 months.
“I repeat with emphasis; I will not end my career in a team other than Fenerbahçe. For the duration of my contract, my only goal is to wear our Çubuklu jersey. This decision is very clear and final.
“As per the requirements of professional life, if our management takes a decision about me, I will only respect this. I will work hard and always keep myself ready.
“As I always say, the main thing is Fenerbahçe. My love and respect to the great Fenerbahce fans.”
Yet it appears the playmaker has now conceded this won’t be possible. If he wants to keep playing football, he needs to make the switch to Basaksehir.
Things seemed to be going pretty well for Özil before he was dropped, as he made 26 appearances and scored nine goals – including four penalties.
But the old story of persistent injury issues and management fall-outs has persisted. For the 26 games he featured in, the former Gunner missed 22 completely. Now his contract is being terminated early.