Cesar Azpilicueta bids emotional adieu to Chelsea

The legendary full-back is set to join Atletico Madrid on a free transfer this summer, bringing his 11-year association with Chelsea to an end.

In a video broadcast on Chelsea’s social media, a heartbroken Azpilicueta thanked supporters for their support and promised to return to Stamford Bridge one day.

“It’s difficult to express with words what I feel,” he began. “It has been incredible, and just, thank you to everyone, because it couldn’t have happened without the help of a lot of people. What a journey.

“Those moments that I take with me will last forever. This is my home and I hope to see everybody here back one day. The love they have shown me every single time is something I’m really proud of. Hopefully we can keep this relationship forever.

“I’m leaving Chelsea after 11 years. I could not imagine myself here today, but thank you very much. I’ve been really proud of defending this badge on and off the pitch.

“It has been my life here. So many amazing memories here, not only on the pitch, but off the pitch as well. We arrived here, just my wife and I, and now we are living with three beautiful kids.”

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In the summer of 2012, Azpilicueta joined the Blues. He went on to participate in 508 games and score 17 goals.

He appeared in 349 Premier League games, scoring 10 times. Azpilicueta has become a vital component of Chelsea since his rookie season. He also played 80 games for Chelsea in Europe, scoring four goals.

Azpilicueta won nine championships with the Blues. He won the EFL Cup, FA Cup, Champions League, UEFA Super Cup, FIFA Club World Cup, two Europa Leagues, and two Premier Leagues. He finished second in six domestic cup competitions.

Azpilicueta began his career in Spain with Osasuna. He appeared in 108 games over four seasons. He then joined French club Marseille, where he played 68 games and scored twice. He was the winner of the Coupe de la Ligue and two Trophée des Champions.