Mesut Ozil has agreed a deal to join Fenerbahce and will depart Arsenal this month after the Gunners agreed to cover his sizeable wages until his contract expires in the summer.
The attacking midfielder has barely played over the past two seasons, with Mikel Arteta leaving him out of his 25-man Premier League squad this campaign.
90min understands that Ozil has finally agreed a pre-contract deal with Fener. However, rather than waiting until June to link up with his teammates, he will instead join this month, after the Gunners agreed to pay his wages while he spends the rest of the season on loan in Istanbul.
Ozil made it clear to Arsenal that he made not depart the club early unless they agreed to honour his current deal - and this is something they have now agreed to.
The former Real Madrid man indicated that he favoured a move to Turkey some time ago with Galatasary and Istanbul Basaksehir both interested. He was also linked with DC United earlier this week, but Ozil turned them down as he does not want to stop playing in Europe, although he would be open to an MLS switch in the future.
Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan - who is a close friend - played his part in making the Fener deal happen. Erdogan indicated that the government would be willing to help the move along as he believes Ozil will help boost the country's prestige.
A source with knowledge of the situation told 90min: "Mesut’s plan was always to come to Turkey and Istanbul. Erdogan ideally wanted him to join Basaksehir, his club, but he made sure he left the decision up to Mesut – as he is just delighted to be able to welcome him to Turkey.
"DC United pushed hard, but Mesut has told them now is not the right time for him to leave European football."
Source : 90min