Wed 22 March 2023 | 13:51

Former Arsenal, Real Madrid and Germany star Mesut Ozil announces retirement aged 34

Former Arsenal and Real Madrid star Mesut Ozil has announced his retirement from football.

Mesut Ozil announced on Wednesday that he has decided to retire from football at the age of 34.

Ozil had a contract with the Turkish side Basaksehir until the end of the season, but he called time on his playing career, with injuries playing a part in his decision.

Ozil's statement read:

"After thoughtful consideration, I’m announcing my immediate retirement from professional football.

"I’ve had the privilege to be a professional football player for almost 17 years now and I feel incredibly thankful for the opportunity.

"But in recent weeks and months, having also suffered some injuries, it’s become more and more clear that it’s time to leave the big stage of football.

"It has been an amazing journey filled with unforgettable moments and emotions. I want to thank my clubs - Schalke, Werder Bremen, Real Madrid, Arsenal, Fenerbahce and Basaksehir - and the coaches who supported me, plus team-mates who have become friends.

Special thanks must go to my family members and my closest friends. They have been a part of my journey from day one and have given me so much love and support, through the good times and the bad.

"Thank you to all my fans who have shown me so much love no matter the circumstances and no matter which club I was representing.

"Now I’m looking forward to everything that is in front of me with my beautiful wife, Amine, and my two beautiful daughters, Eda and Ela - but you can be sure that you will hear from me from time to time on my social media channels.”

Ozil began his senior club career playing for his hometown club Schalke, before signing with Werder Bremen in 2008. He joined Real Madrid in 2010 and made 159 appearances for them. He won one La Liga title and one Copa Del Ray title during his time in Spain. In 2013, Ozil signed for Arsenal in a transfer worth up to £42.5 million. He played 254 times for Arsenal and won four FA Cups.

On January 2021, Ozil moved to the Turkish club Fenerbahçe, but last summer he terminated his contract and joined İstanbul Başakşehir. He only started in two games for this club, and his final game was on February 2, when he was substituted at half-time during Istanbul Basaksehir's 1-0 defeat at Kayserispor in the Turkish Super Lig.

The former Germany international played in 92 matches for his country and scored 23 goals. He won the 2014 World Cup with Germany.

Oil has won the German Player of the Year award five times and was named in UEFA Team of the Year for 2012 and 2013. He also was named in the Euro 2012 Team of the Tournament.



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