MX23RW : Friday, February 26 00:58:18| >> :60:1997:1997:

Mesut Ozil 'agrees to terminate Arsenal contract'

Mesut Ozil 'agrees to terminate Arsenal contract'
© Reuters
The 32-year-old has not played for the club since March and could leave on a free transfer.

Mesut Ozil's seven-and-a-half year stay at Arsenal is set to end after the two parties reached an agreement in principle to release him from his contract.

The 32-year-old has not played for the Gunners since March and his £350,000-a-week deal was set to expire at the end of the current season.

The PA news agency understands, however, that both parties have all-but agreed to tear up the final months of his contract.

Ozil had been expected to leave in the January transfer window and would be able to sign for another club as a free agent should the final few details be ironed out smoothly.

Arsenal v Crystal Palace – Premier League – Emirates Stadium
Mesut Ozil has scored 44 goals since joining Arsenal from Real Madrid in 2013 (Bradley Collyer/PA)

Major League Soccer's DC United had been strongly linked with a move for the former Germany international but Fenerbahce are now believed to be leading the race to sign Ozil.

Having started the first 10 games under Mikel Arteta following his appointment in December 2019, Ozil has not featured since a 1-0 win over West Ham before the coronavirus pandemic saw football grind to a halt.

He was omitted from Arsenal's Premier League and Europa League squads, with Arteta and technical director Edu insisting the decision to do so was down to footballing reasons.

Ozil was criticised in some quarters when he refused to take a pay-cut during the summer, with no football being played and Arsenal looking to balance the books.

He had signed his current deal in January 2018 to become the highest-paid player in the club's history but now looks set to depart on a free.

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