Berlin [Germany], March 22 (ANI): Former Arsenal, Real Madrid and Germany midfielder Mesut Ozil has announced his retirement at the age of 34.
During his time with his club, Ozil won nine awards, including four FA Cups and the 2012 La Liga title. He also won 92 caps for Germany.
In a post on Twitter, Ozil stated that his desire to leave the great stage of football was becoming "more and more evident," with injuries playing a role in his decision.
"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, its become more and more clear that its time to leave the big stage of football," Ozil wrote in a post on Twitter.
"It has been an amazing journey filled with unforgettable moments and emotions. I want to thank my clubs - Schalke 04, Werder Bremen, Real Madrid, Arsenal FC, Fenerbahce, BaSSakwhir and the coaches who supported me, plus team-mates who have become friends," he added.
"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," Ozil said.
The Turkish Super Lig match between Istanbul Basaksehir and Kayserispor on February 2 marked Ozil's final match, in which he was replaced at halftime. After joining Fenerbahce last summer, he only made two starts for the team.
In addition to having trouble getting into games with Basaksehir, Ozil also had fitness issues at Fenerbahce for 18 months before joining their Turkish rivals at the start of the season.
His career had been on the wane since he lost favour at Arsenal and eventually left after agreeing to end his contract. There were rumours of him calling time on his career earlier this year. He then had a brief but challenging time at Fenerbahce before moving to Istanbul Basaksehir for the 2022-23 season. However, he seldom turned out for the latter. (ANI)