Captain of Catalan giants today announced his intention to leave the club after the conclusion of the current season, citing continual injury setbacks as a significant reason behind his decision.
At an official press conference this afternoon, Puyol told reporters: “At the end of the season I’ll be having a rest and I’ll be deciding what to do after”. He added “I want to thank everyone at the club for everything they have done for me”, “There are 3 months of the season left and I won’t be giving up”.
He cited being “tired” after facing many injury problems and operations in recent years as the main reason behind the decision of himself and the club to cancel his contract, which was due to run until 2016.
Puyol was born on the 13th of April 1978 in La Pobla de Segur. A Catalonia native, he successfully graduated from Barcelona’s famous La Masia academy.
On the 2nd of October 1999, he was handed his first-team debut by Louis Van Gaal in a league match against Real Valladolid. In 2004, Puyol was appointed club captain after the departure of Luis Enrique, and soon became a favourite amongst fans for the commitment, desire and passion he showed towards the club.
During a decorated 15 year career the 35-year-old has won no fewer than 21 major honours, including 6 La Liga, 2 Copa del Rey and 3 Champions League trophies.
To date he has clocked up 593 senior club appearances, in addition to earning 100 caps for the Spanish national team, for whom he played a key role in their successes at Euro 2008 and the 2010 World Cup.