Gerard Pique, the defender of Barcelona announced he will retire from football when the Spanish league suspends the World Cup this month.
Pique, 35, said Saturday’s game against Almeria in La Liga will be his last at the Camp. Nou for the Catalan club after 14 years in the first team following his return from Manchester United in 2008.
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Barca will then travel to Osasuna next week for their final match before the World Cup in Qatar.
“It’s been weeks since there have been talks about me,” Pique said in a video posted on social media. “I didn’t say anything. but i want to say now
“Like many of you from a football family. I’ve always been a Barcelona fan. I don’t want to be a footballer. I want to play for Barça.
“Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about when I was younger about what Gerard would have thought if I told him he would make all his dreams come true. He will play for Barca and become a European and world champion.
“He will play with the best players. He was the captain of the club … football gave me everything. Barça gave me everything. your boyfriend gave me everything And now my childhood dream has come true. has arrived to close this chapter
“I always say that after Barcelona there will be no other team and it will be. Saturday will be my last game at Camp Nou.
“I’m going to be another fan after that. I will support the team and pass on my love for the club to my children, just as they have done for me. and you know me sooner or later i’ll be back See you at Camp Nou.” Visca Barça always and forever.”
Culers us he de dir una cosa pic.twitter.com/k3V919pm1T
— Gerard Pique (@3gerardpique) November 3, 2022
Pique’s grandfather was on the board at Barcelona. And Pique joined the club’s academy in 1997 before moving to Manchester United in 2004.
After four years in Manchester That included a season-long loan in Spain with Real Zaragoza and 23 first-team appearances in England. He returned to Barca in 2008.
Under Pep Guardiola he was part of a team that won three titles in the 2008-09 season and he will leave after winning eight La Liga titles and three Champions League trophies, among other trophies. many more
He also won the 2010 World Cup and the 2012 European Championship during his nine-year career with Spain, during which time he made 102 appearances before retiring from international football after the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
Pique played for the senior team in his first 14 seasons, but has dropped this year’s rankings. Following the signings of Andreas Christensen and Jules Koonde
Despite being the fifth choice in his position, Ronald Araujo and Eric Garcia were ahead of him. Pique remains nine games in all competitions this season due to injuries elsewhere.
However, after the 3-3 draw with Inter Milan last month When Pique was criticized, left-back Marcos Alonso was used as his defensive line in the defensive line. causing him to consider quitting playing in the middle of the season with a contract until 2024.
Barca told Pique in the summer that the minutes to come this season are difficult as they want to move or cut the salaries of some veterans, including Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba.
Pique, Busquets and Alba have all adjusted their salaries and have agreed to cut and defer wages at several points in recent years. to help the club deal with a difficult financial situation
However, with deferred payments Their salaries take up a large chunk of Barca’s budget compared to the number of minutes they have played under Xavi this season.
A source contacted by ESPN could not immediately confirm whether Pique’s retirement meant he had agreed to hand over the money he owed or if a deal had been negotiated with Barca.
Pique, who turns 36 in January. and have other interests outside of football Through his company Kosmos, he improved the Davis Cup tennis tournament and he also owns second division team Andorra.
He has previously said he plans to run for president of Barca when he retires, although in recent years he has suggested that while that remains an option. But it was definitely not something he would pursue.