Following confirmation that he is set to leave Los Blancos after a remarkable nine years at the Santiago Bernabeu, Cristiano Ronaldo has addressed the Real Madrid faithful.
The statement from Ronaldo reads:
"These years in Real Madrid, have been possibly the happiest of my life.
"I have enormous gratitude for the club and for the city. I can only thank them for the love and affection I received.
"However, I believe that the time has come to start a new chapter in my career, therefore I have submitted a transfer request to the club. This is how I feel, and I hope the fans can understand this.
"I have enjoyed nine wonderful years at the club. They have been nine extraordinary years. It has been a exciting time for, full of success and difficulties as there is a lot of pressure to succeed at Real Madrid, but I know that I will never forget how much I have enjoyed football here.
In a letter posted on Madrid's official website, Ronaldo said: "These years in Real Madrid ... have been possibly the happiest of my life.— Omnisport (@OmnisportNews) July 10, 2018
"However, I believe that the time has come to open a new stage in my life and that is why I have asked the club to accept transferring me." pic.twitter.com/jZrdhbYsZF
"I have had fabulous teammates both on and off the field, and I have felt the support of an incredible fanbase. We have won together three Champions Leagues in a row and four Champions Leagues in five years. And with them also on an individual level, I have had the joy of winning four Ballon d'Or titles and three Golden Boot awards. All this during my time at this extraordinary club.
"Real Madrid have conquered my heart, and that is why more than ever I want to say thank you: thank you to the club, the President, the directors, my colleagues, all the technicians, doctors, physios and incredible workers that make everything work and that are pending every detail tirelessly.
El Real Madrid C. F. comunica que, atendiendo a la voluntad y petición expresadas por el jugador Cristiano Ronaldo, ha acordado su traspaso a la Juventus F. C. - Hoy el Real Madrid quiere expresar su agradecimiento a un jugador que ha demostrado ser el mejor del mundo y que ha marcado una de las épocas más brillantes de la historia de nuestro club y del fútbol mundial. - Más allá de los títulos conquistados, de los trofeos conseguidos y de los triunfos alcanzados en los terrenos de juego durante estos 9 años, Cristiano Ronaldo ha sido un ejemplo de entrega, de trabajo, de responsabilidad, de talento y de superación. - Se ha convertido además en el máximo goleador de la historia del Real Madrid con 451 goles en 438 partidos. En total 16 títulos, entre ellos 4 Copas de Europa, 3 de ellas consecutivas y 4 en las últimas 5 temporadas. A título individual, con la camiseta del Real Madrid ha ganado 4 Balones de Oro, 2 The Best, y 3 Botas de Oro, entre otros muchos galardones. - Para el Real Madrid Cristiano Ronaldo será siempre uno de sus grandes símbolos y una referencia única para las próximas generaciones. - El Real Madrid será siempre su casa. #RealMadrid #GraciasCristiano
"Thank you infinitely once more to our fans and thanks also to Spanish football. During these nine exciting years I have faced great players. My respect and recognition to them all.
"I have reflected a lot and I know that the time has come for change. I'm leaving, but this shirt, this crest, and the Santiago Bernabeu will continue to feels these things wherever I am.
"Thanks to all and, of course, as I said that first time in our stadium nine years ago: Hala Madrid!"
Cristiano Ronaldo is expected to complete his move to Juventus within the coming days, with a £88m fee already agreed and personal terms also reportedly agreed following a meeting between CR7 and Juve's president Andre Agnelli in Greece on Tuesday afternoon.
The reigning Ballon d'Or winner is also reportedly set to complete his medical at Vinovo at the start of next week.