Mesut Ozil says the Arsenal fans would “forever remain in my heart” as he finally completed his transfer to Fenerbahce.
The midfielder ended his Gunners nightmare on Sunday after months of being frozen out under boss Mikel Arteta.
Ozil has long divided opinion among the Arsenal fanbase over his contribution to the club in recent years, but he leaves with nothing but fond memories.
“I’d like to thank the club for this amazing journey over the past seven-and-a-half years,” he said in his farewell message on Arsenal’s official website.
“The support I have felt from the team and fans during my time here has been truly incredible and something I will always be grateful for.
“Together we won trophies for the first time in years and created memories that will last a lifetime.
“The Arsenal fans will forever remain in my heart.”
Ozil struck a deal with Arsenal to mutually terminate his £350,000-per-week contract, which still had six months left to run.
The 32-year-old was not likely to play any further part in Arsenal’s season though, given he was not even registered as part of their 25-man Premier League squad.
Ozil added: “I’d like to thank [Arsenal technical director] Edu Gaspar for helping bring about a professional and dignified solution in the past few days, and I wish everyone at the club the best in their attempt to continue to bring Arsenal back to the top, where we belong.”
His arrival at Fenerbahce has already been met with plenty of furore in Turkey, though the club’s president has set up a fund-raiser for fans to donate to help pay for Ozil’s salary.
Ozil has had to take a huge pay cut to move to the Super Lig club he has supported as a boy, but agreed terms on a deal worth £13million over the entirety of the contract.
Despite many regarding Ozil as a hero at Arsenal, he leaves with a lingering sense that he could have achieved more.
He wrote in a separate message on his Twitter account that he had “no regrets” and is “holding no grudges” despite his fallout with boss Arteta.
Mikel Arteta said: “Mesut’s achievements at Arsenal are undisputed. It was a privilege to play alongside him and, more recently, coach him.
“His creativity and vision led to many goals during his time in the Arsenal shirt.
“Mesut was at the heart of many great moments for this club over the years, including those three FA Cup final wins.
“These successes will always be part of our history. We thank Mesut and wish him all the best with Fenerbahce.”