Many fans of Barcelona and Carles Puyol received some bad news Tuesday.
The defender announced he will be leaving the team at the end of the season. Puyol’s reason for leaving is to take some time off from football after many seasons filled with injuries.
This decision to leave may also put his future in football (soccer to us American folk) in jeopardy.
Puyol made his football debut in 1999 with Barcelona and has been with the team ever since. The 35-year-old returned to the team this season after a knee injury in October, only playing in 12 games.
Though two years remain on Puyol’s contract with Barcelona, the team has agreed to officially cancel the deal.
“The recovery from my knee injury was more difficult than expected. I cannot perform anymore at the level I’d want. When the season ends I need to rest and then we will see. I’ve got three months left and I’m going to give my all for Barca, but I don’t know what I’ll do at the end of the season,” said Puyol.
Puyol earned the respect of players, coaches, and fans alike during his career. Puyol was integral in helping Barcelona win three Champions League titles and helped Spain win the 2010 World Cup.
Of Puyol, Spain coach Vicente del Bosque said, “He’s a reference for every player and a leader on the field of play.”
One fan believes Barcelona should so something special to commemorate Puyol.
— Mitchetti (@ListenToMitch) March 6, 2014
Many more took to Twitter to share how much they will miss Puyol and thanking the defender for the stellar job he has done with the club.
Good bye #carles Puyol you'll leave and we will never forget you captain ♡
— Nayef AlAbdullah (@NayoofBarca) March 6, 2014
— Yedi Pratama Isnah (@yedytove) March 6, 2014
— هايقال (@__HAIQAL__) March 6, 2014
Image via Carles Puyol, Twitter.