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Napoli’s Mertens, Arsenal’s Torreira join Türkiye’s Galatasaray

Galatasaray has announced that Uruguayan midfielder Lucas Torreira and Belgian attacker Dries Mertens have both joined the Turkish club.

According to the Istanbul team’s website, the Lions will pay €6 million ($6.1 million) to English side Arsenal for Torreira, who signed a contract with Galatasaray for four seasons, and €2.75 million ($2.8 million) per season to the Uruguayan player.

“I’m very happy with the decision I made, it was a well-thought one,” the 26-year-old Torreira told the club’s TV.

“The most important thing is to try to get used to the city, also to get to know the club, my teammates. I want to train already,” he added.

Torreira, who joined Premier League club Arsenal in 2018, formerly made appearances for Atletico Madrid (2020-2021) and Fiorentina (2021-2022) on loan. The 26-year-old also has 39 caps for the Uruguayan national team so far.

‘Happy and excited’

Mertens, on the other hand, signed with the Lions for one year (with another optional year) and will get €2.9 million ($2.96 million) per season and €1.1 million ($1.12 million) as a signing fee.

“It was an honour to get an offer from Galatasaray,” Mertens said in a Twitter post.

“I’m happy and excited.”

Belgium national Mertens, who has 21 goals in 105 caps, played for Dutch clubs PSV Eindhoven and Utrecht before joining Serie A team Napoli.

The 35-year-old Mertens bagged two Italian Cups (2014, 2020) with the Blues, where the versatile winger became the club’s record goalscorer.

Fans of the record 22-time Turkish champions welcomed the two players at an airport on Saturday as they arrived for final medical checks.

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