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Arsenal target Willian confirms Chelsea exit with heartfelt statement
Willian has released a statement of thanks to Chelsea after confirming he is leaving the club.
The Brazilian winger has been at Stamford Bridge since 2013. However, his contract expired at the end of this season. And despite him being willing to stay, Chelsea were not able to offer the three-year contract he was holding out for.
A move across London to Arsenal seems to be the next step for Willian. The Gunners have reportedly met his demands for a three-year deal.
And if Chelsea had any lingering hope that Willian might stay, it has now gone. The 32-year-old has revealed that his time at the club has come to an end.
He posted the following message on Twitter: “They were seven wonderful years.
“In August 2013 when I received the offer from Chelsea, I was convinced that this was where I had to play. Today I am certain that it was the best of decisions.
“There were so many happy times, some sad, there were trophies and it was always very intense.
“Yet, beyond the trophies, I learnt a lot about myself. I developed a great deal, becoming a better player and a better person.
“With each training session, with each game, with every minute spent in the dressing room, I was always learning.
“I am really grateful to the Chelsea fans for the affectionate way they welcomed me at Stamford Bridge and their support throughout my time at the club.
“There was also criticism, which is normal, what is important though is that both the affection and the criticism drove me to always give my all in every training session, every game, to be constantly improving until my very last minute in a Chelsea shirt.
“The time has now come to move on. I am certainly going to miss my teammates. I will miss all the staff at the club who’ve always treated me like a son and I will miss the fans.
“I leave with my head held high, safe in the knowledge that I won things here and always did my best in a Chelsea shirt.
“My heartfelt thanks go out to all of you and God bless you.”
Chelsea boss Frank Lampard, who was once Willian’s teammate, recently admitted he would not stand in the winger’s way if he wanted to leave.
“In terms of being disappointed, certainly as a club I think we have done everything we can to explain to Willian, and mine and his relationship is really close,” Lampard said before Chelsea’s last game of the season in the Champions League against Bayern Munich, which Willian was injured for.
“I would have no feeling of disappointment if he does move on.
“Ive played with him, coached him, hes a fantastic man and a fantastic player.
“I think he will feel like that about Chelsea, Ill leave him to say his own words.”
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