Mesut Özil thanks Arsenal fans as he departs for Fenerbahçe
"To all the Arsenal fans around the world, YaGunnersYa."
Mesut Özil has posted a heartfelt farewell message to Arsenal fans after his transfer to Fenerbahçe was confirmed.
Arsenal published confirmation of the move, with quotes from Technical Director Edu Gaspar and Mikel Arteta, while Özil took to Twitter to post a thread of tweets reflecting on the past seven and a half years.
"7.5 years. Nearly 3,000 days. It feels strange to be writing this message after such a long time here in London," the message it began.
"Since the moment I arrived, it has felt like home. I was welcomed with open arms by all the Arsenal staff, my teammates, and most importantly the incredible fans.
"I will always be grateful for the trust placed in my by Arsene Wenger since 2013. I've grown up as an adult in North London, a place I can always call home. I'll never forget that.
"Being with Arsenal for so long has meant I've experienced a big mix of ups and downs. Over 250 games, 44 goals and 71 assists later, it's time that Arsenal and I finally part ways."
Reflecting on his successes at the club, Özil remembered how "together, we ended the nine year trophy drought, and brought long needed silverware back to the fans who deserved it."
As one of the senior members of Arsenal's squad, Özil heaped praise on some of the younger players now playing instead of him.
"It's been amazing to see some of the boys from Hale End coming through into the first team set-up. They are the future of our club, I wish them every success.
"Hearing my name chanted around the Emirates will forever give me goosebumps, and the memories I've made putting on this jersey will stick with me for life.
"Much has been written about my time at Arsenal, especially in recent months. Arsenal is a club class of prestige, something I felt every time I walked onto the pitch.
— Mesut Özil (@MesutOzil1088) January 24, 2021
"The principles of class, respect and dignity must never be forgotten. it is the responsibility of every single person from the club to make sure they carry out their job in the name of these values.
"As I said, the past few months haven't been the easiest. Like every player, I want to play every minute of football for my team. In life however, things do not always play out how we expect or want them to.
"But it is important to look for positives and not the negative, which is why I try to live with no regrets and hold no grudges."
He goes on for a bit, and wraps it up with a final goodbye: "It might be the end of a chapter, but my connection with this amazing club will never fade.
"It might be goodbye for now, but it's not goodbye forever.
"To the Arsenal fans around the world: Ya Gunners Ya. Mesut."