Antonio Valencia has thanked Manchester United‘s fans for their undivided support over the last decade as the outgoing captain prepares to go through a “roller coaster of emotions” when donning the red shirt one last time.
The 33-year-old has enjoyed a memorable period at Old Trafford since joining from Wigan in 2009, winning two Premier League titles, an FA Cup and two League Cups before captaining the side to Europa League glory.
Valencia has gone from flying winger to marauding full-back during his time at a club he is now saying his goodbyes to ahead of his 339th and final appearance for United in Sunday’s season finale against Cardiff.
The Ecuador international will leave the club when his contract expires this summer, ending a period of his life that he will always remember fondly.
“It means the world to me – a roller coaster of emotions from sadness to ecstasy,” Valencia told Press Association Sport ahead of Sunday’s match, when manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is planning a celebratory goodbye.
“Sadness because I have won everything as a player here and will miss these moments.
“Sadness too because we have suffered heavy defeats as a team but thanks to the support of the fans we have managed to lift ourselves and I have no doubt they will savour more success in the near future as they deserve.
“They have always supported me even in my darkest days with serious injuries.
“My wife and daughter and closest friends will join me in my final game.
“I hope they enjoy and savour the occasion as much as I do as their commitment and support during the past 10 years was crucial to my success.
“My message to all Manchester United fans on behalf of myself and my family is to thank you for giving me your undivided support.
“I wish them all the best for the future and that future teams provide you with great victories on the field and as much success as they can muster.”