Istanbul (AFP) – French international striker Bafetimbi Gomis Thursday signed for Turkish top flight side Galatasaray from Swansea City of the English Premier League in a three year deal for a 2.5 million euro transfer fee.
Gomis, 31, who spent the past season on loan at Marseille, had the day earlier received an ecstatic welcome in Istanbul when he was mobbed by hundreds of fans of the “Lions” and then passed a medical.
Swansea will receive 2.5 million euros ($2.8 million) for the player, who will get an annual wage of 3.35 million euros ($3.8 million) excluding bonuses for success in the Turkish Super Lig and UEFA competitions in each of the three seasons, Galatasaray said in a statement.
“I am ready to be a lion for Galatasaray so that the club wins titles and great victories against its rivals,” said Gomis as he signed the contract alongside Galatasaray president Dursun Ozbek.
Following a five-year stint at Lyon, Gomis signed for Swansea in 2014. He did not make the hoped-for impact and spent the 2016-2017 season on loan to Marseille, scoring a career-best 20 Ligue 1 goals.
Galatasaray are on a summer spending spree after finishing fourth in the Super Lig last season, well behind champions and Istanbul rivals Besiktas.
The result was unacceptable for fans of Galatasaray, which has won more Turkish championships than any other club.
The future of its Dutch midfielder Wesley Sneijder — who has been the fulcrum of the club’s attack since joining in 2013 — is uncertain while German marksman Lukas Podolski is leaving for Japan’s Vissel Kobe.
Galatasaray are also set to sign the French-born Moroccan international midfielder Younes Belhanda from Dynamo Kyiv of Ukraine who is due to arrive in Istanbul later Thursday.
Galatasaray last week also signed Brazilian central defender Maicon Pereira Roque from Sao Paulo in a deal reportedly worth seven million euros for the Brazilian club.
French attacking midfielder Mathieu Valbuena meanwhile Thursday signed for Galatasaray’s arch Istanbul rivals Fenerbahce as they seek to reinforce their attacking line.
“Valbuena congratulated me yesterday, I said that we were friends but from now on we would be playing for rival clubs and I want to see him under Galatasaray in the table,” joked Gomis.