The former Germany international left Emirates Stadium in January 2021 to link up with Turkish giants Fenerbahce
Mesut Ozil’s agent, Dr Erkut Sogut, has been discussing how his client was forced out of Arsenal in January 2021 while also reacting to questions of whether a World Cup-winning playmaker could ever return to the Premier League.
An ex-Germany international spent seven-and-a-half years at Emirates Stadium prior to linking up with Turkish giants Fenerbahce, with over 250 appearances taken in for the Gunners while winning three FA Cups and the Community Shield.
Ozil was eventually phased out in north London, despite working on a lucrative contract, and headed for the exits after being left out of domestic and continental squads by former team-mate Mikel Arteta.
Was Ozil forced out at Arsenal?
Reflecting on at acrimonious exit at Arsenal, Sogut has told The Mirror: “I just ask for fair treatment like with any other player. But to not be in the squad at all, that was a couple of days before the window was closing and it was too late for us to react anyway.
“Maybe three days, four days before when I was told he might not be in the squad at all, he might not be listed. So that was a surprise. First for the Europa League and then for the Premier League as well, that was not expected by us at all.
“The coach didn’t want him in the squad and the player has to accept that, what can you do?
“He always said he wanted to stay until the end of his contract, but when he realised it wouldn’t change he didn’t see any reason just to sit and not be in the squad at all.
“It’s not easy for any player and he realised as well: ‘Look, I need to move on now, even though I’d love to stay here. I won’t play for the rest of the season, at all, so when that was clear there was no reason to stay there for five months.”
Did Ozil fall out with Arteta?
Ozil’s commitment and contribution to the collective cause at Emirates Stadium was called into question on a regular basis prior to his departure, but Sogut insists his client never suffered a falling out with Arteta.
He added: “They played together, they were friends together on the pitch, they shared a lot already, and then he became his coach. It was no longer a ‘you’re my friend’ relationship. And it doesn’t matter where you play as a football player you have to respect the coach fully, and that is what he did. He respected every decision the coach took, and as a person, there was no problem at all.
“He spent most of his career at Arsenal and it was a special time coming and winning immediately the FA Cup after such a long time Arsenal won a cup again, and the fans were really hoping for a player like him to come and bring some brilliance on the pitch.
“He came at a moment and really things changed in a positive direction. Especially in the first couple of years, I think it was great and he enjoyed it a lot. I mean, he owes the fans a lot he even says they created a song for him. He didn’t have that anywhere else.”
Could Ozil play in the Premier League again?
There was talk in January of Ozil potentially emerging as a target for Newcastle, as they seek to get more proven performers onto their books, but Sogut says no return to England will be made.
“He always said ‘I’m a Gunner in and out’ and if there was a discussion to go to another Premier League club, even after two or three years when he was at Arsenal, before the contract negotiations to get a new one, it would have never, ever happened,” Sogut said.
“It was impossible for him. He was like ‘Look, if you’re a Gunner, you can’t go to play for another Premier League club. You play here and that’s it’. And I think the same will happen in Turkey, he won’t play for another club in Turkey.”
Ozil was left out of Fenerbahce’s squad towards the end of the 2021-22 campaign, but Sogut expects bridges to be rebuilt there and claims a man that is now 33 years of age “wants to retire his career in Turkey”.