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Page last updated at 14:51 GMT, Wednesday, 1 September 2010 15:51 UK

Everton's Joseph Yobo joins Fenerbahce on loan

by Oluwashina Okeleji
BBC Sport

Joseph Yobo in action for Everton
Yobo has been an Everton player since 2002

Everton defender Joseph Yobo has joined Turkish side Fenerbahce on loan.

The 29-year-old, who has made more than 250 appearances for Everton since joining in 2002, passed a medical and agreed personal terms on Wednesday.

Fenerbahce will have the option of signing the player on a permanent basis at the end of the campaign.

Phil Jagielka and Sylvain Distin are Everton's first choice centre-backs, while John Heitinga and Jack Rodwell are also able to play in that position.

Yobo, who captained Nigeria at the World Cup this summer, has not featured for the Toffees this season.

The 29-year-old played down reports that he was forced out of Goodison Park, saying that his desire for regular football was the reason for the move.

"I'm a fighter, I hate to sit on the bench and get paid," Yobo told BBC Sport.

"As a professional footballer I want to be on the pitch as long as I am fit to play.

"I spoke with the coach [David Moyes] and he understood my position.

Everton will always be in my heart, the supporters, players, chairman and everyone at the club were always brilliant with me

Nigeria captain, Joseph Yobo

"It was better for both parties that I seek first team football elsewhere."

Yobo also spoke highly of Moyes who signed him during his first full season in charge of the Toffees.

"I have never had any problems with the coach, he is great man and I am a professional footballer fired up by challenges," he said.

However, a reported bust-up with Moyes following his decision to travel for the 2010 Africa Cup of Nations in January saw him slip down the pecking order at the club.

He insisted though, that there are no bad feelings attached to his departure from Everton.

"Everton will always be in my heart, the supporters, players, chairman and everyone at the club were always brilliant with me," he said.

"I leave knowing there is always a reunion in the future but the chance of playing in Turkey is very exciting.

"Fenerbahce provides another challenge for me and I want to give everything to the club during my time here."

"They have a very good project, a fantastic fan base and talented players and I hope to bring my experience and ability into the project here."

Yobo's contract with Everton runs until 2014.

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see also
Celtic eye Everton defender Yobo
19 Aug 10 |  Celtic

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