Arsenal have confirmed the sale of its forward, Lukas Podolski to Galatasaray in the Turkish top division.
Sky Sports revealed on Wednesday that Podolski was in talks with Galatasaray whilst on holiday in Turkey, having been told he would be allowed to leave north London by Gunners boss, Arsene Wenger.
The Germany international star has now signed a three-year deal (with an option for a fourth) with Turkish giants, Galatasaray reported to be worth an initial fee of £1.8 million, BBC reports.
The same source above says the Super Liga champions will pay future instalments to the Gunners based on their qualification for the Champions League.
As revealed by Sky Sports, Arsenal will be due around £357,000 if Galatasaray qualifies for the Champions League during his contract.
Podolski, 30, played spent the second half of last season loan at Inter Milan after seeing his chances limited at the Emirates stadium. The Nerazurri coach, Roberto Mancini preferred Shaqiri to the Arsenal man and this prompted his return to Arsenal.
He was, however seen as surplus to requirements by Arsene Wenger, with the presence of Mesut Ozil, Alexis Sanchez, Theo Walcott and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain at the Frenchman’s disposal.
According to the Guardian, Wenger ‘begrudgingly’ allowed Podolski to leave. The Gunners’ boss wanted to keep the attacker at Arsenal, but could not guarantee him a starting place. “We had good talks with Wenger. He wanted to keep Podolski but could not guarantee him a starting position. That’s why we agree to make the transfer”,the player’s agent, Nassim Touihri revealed.
Despite being 30, Lukas Podolski still craves game time which he believes he will get at the Turk Telecom Arena with the Hamza Hamzaoglu’s side.
Galatasaray president, Dursun Ayden Ozbek confirmed that Podolski had been a long term target for the club. “Podolski is a player we have been following for a long time. We have met the expectations of our fans. We think he will serve us for many years”, Ozbek said.
Although Podolski is a prolific goal poacher, injuries and Wenger’s preference of other players in his place did not help his cause.
The World Cup-winning Germany international also expressed his delight after signing the deal:”I came to a winning team that will compete in the Champions League if we qualify”. “Galatasaray fans gave support to me in the years last year (sic) and I feel a large share of warmth today while I’m signing”, Podolski added.
The former Bayern Munich and Koln player scored 31 goals in 82 appearances for the Gunners, with 60 of those appearances being in the Premier League. He also won the FA Cup with the team in 2013.