Puyol announces he will leave Barcelona at season's end

Barcelona captain Carles Puyol (5) says he is leaving the club at the end of the season.
Manu Fernandez/AP

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) - Defender Carles Puyol has announced he will leave Barcelona at the end of the season.

The 35-year-old Puyol has spent his entire career with the Spanish league champion, having debuted in 1999. But he has made just 12 appearances this season after battling knee injuries.

Puyol has been an essential figure in Barcelona's and Spain's recent achievements, as the center back helped Spain win the 2010 World Cup two years after its European Championship triumph.

While helping Spain to the top of world football, Puyol has been the warrior defender for Barcelona, helping the Catalan club to 21 trophies including three Champions Leagues.

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide - from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Seth Davis, and more - delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.