Mesut Ozil must be remembered as one of the most talented midfielders of the 21st century.
In his peak, the wizardry German was disrupting defences for fun with passes that very few players can see, and pulling off unworldly goal contributions with a technique like no other.
After proving himself as the creative lynchpin at Real Madrid in the early 2010s, finishing as La Liga’s top assister for three seasons in a row, Arsenal parted with a club record fee to bring him to the Emirates in 2013.
Ozil was adored by Arsenal fans, who got to enjoy his unrelenting creativity in the Autumn of Arsene Wenger’s epic managerial tenure with the club.
The German World Cup winner helped the Gunners to three FA Cups and a Community Shield, while also finishing as a League Cup and Europa League runner up during his stay, alongside lighting up the Premier League in his peak.
His love affair with Arsenal unfortunately came to a rather sour ending in 2021, however, when he left the club shortly after penning a new mega contract, having fallen out of favour under Mikel Arteta and ultimately being left out of Arsenal’s squads in his final season with the club.
It prompted a move to Fenerbahce that year, who had been after Ozil for a long time. Recruiting a top target who was also a boyhood fan resulted in endless fanfare and romance about the move, but his tenure in Turkey has been just as forgettable as his final season at Arsenal.
While it started brightly, Ozil has been left out of Fener’s first team squad by manager Jorge Jesus ahead of his third season with the Turkish giants, leaving his career in limbo at the age of 33.
Ozil’s agent, Dr Erkut Sogut, spoke to the Telegraph about the future of his star client, casting doubt over his future in football with a rather strange new career venture possibly lined up.
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“He will go more into eSports, play himself and maybe become an eSports athlete,” Explained Sogut, stating that a career in the blossoming world of eSports is a very real prospect.
“He’s really good, to be honest, at Fortnite and I think one day I wouldn’t be surprised if he is competing.”
“He owns a team – M10 Esports – and he has players. He has a gaming house in Germany. He has football, like FIFA, and Fortnite.”
Nobody would’ve predicted that in 2022, Ozil – a World Cup winner and one of the greatest players of the previous decade – would be frozen out of a side in the Turkish top flight and considering a career switch to being a professional video game player.
— M10 (@M10esports) April 19, 2022
But alas, it feels like a reality. It’s an avenue that clearly makes him happy considering he has owned his eSports team since 2018. Football, meanwhile, only seems to be ending in tears for Ozil, who has now endured a bitter ending to his stay at both Arsenal and Fenerbahce in the last couple of years.
Of course, it would be a massive shame to see such a talented footballer walk away from the beautiful game while he still has life left in him, but you cannot blame him for chasing a new dream and starting fresh.
The prospect of seeing Ozil in the eSports world is also incredibly exciting, and a testament to just how huge the world of professional gaming is continuing to become.
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