Most transfer windows across Europe slammed shut on September 1. However, teams in Turkey could make moves up until Thursday. Juan Mata and Mauro Icardi are just a couple of the players to make a late move over to Turkey. Both signed for Süper Lig club and Turkish giant Galatasaray.

Mata, now 34, joins the club after spending the last eight-and-a-half seasons with Manchester United. He arrives on a free transfer with a salary in the area of $2 million.

“I feel so good,” said the Spaniard on his move to Galatasaray. “I am excited and very motivated. I’m grateful for being here. Everyone is being very friendly. I can’t wait to win with Galatasaray.”

Along with Mata, Galatasaray made a loan move for PSG forward Mauro Icardi. The Argentine striker was previously one of the top targets for clubs all over Europe. After a massively successful spell at Inter Milan, he was purchased by PSG in a $55 million deal two years ago. Icardi eventually fell down the pecking order with the Parisians but will now get his chance to shine in Turkey. Also, PSG retains some of his contract, making him more of a bargain for Galatasaray.

“I got a lot of offers this summer,” claimed Icardi.  “We had long dialogues with [team vice president] Mr. Erden. As a result, I came here. He did everything he could. I’m so happy to finally be here.”

Mata, Icardi not alone in switch to Turkey

Also, Icardi set his sights on European qualification with his new club. “Hopefully we can bring this team back to the top level again,” stated the striker. “Galatasaray is a team that always aims high. We want to be a part of it. The players, the staff, all the fans want to celebrate it by introducing another Champions League night.”

The massive club will look to bounce back after finishing a very disappointing 13th in the Süper Lig last season. Gala also made other marquee signings such as Dries Mertens, Lucas Torreira, Yusuf Demir, and Haris Seferovic in the summer as well.

Süper Lig teams across the country brought in big names in the sport throughout the transfer period. Mesut Ozil, Michy Batshuayi, Gedson Fernandes, Dele Alli, Bertrand Traore, and Nathan Redmond all swapped clubs to play in Turkey.

PHOTO: Imago / Seskim Photo