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Evra thanks Sir Alex as he leaves United for Juve

ESPN staff
July 21, 2014
Evra completes Juventus move

Patrice Evra has thanked former manager Sir Alex Ferguson after ending his eight-and-a-half year stay at Manchester United to join Juventus.

The 33-year-old has signed a two-year deal with the Italian champions for a fee of £1.2 million after asking to leave Old Trafford for personal reasons. Although United took up a one-year contract extension in May, they agreed to allow him to go.

"After a great deal of thought I have decided the time is right for me to leave Manchester United," Evra, whom Ferguson signed from Monaco for £5.5m in January 2006, said in a statement on United's official website. "It is the biggest decision of my career as this club is, and will always remain, in my heart.

"An immense thank you to Sir Alex Ferguson for making it all possible, for giving me the privilege to be a captain, to be inspired by the legend of Manchester United and to understand that nobody is bigger than the club.

"Joining and playing for Manchester United has been a privilege, a dream come true and my time here has been so memorable. Through the good times and the bad times we have all stuck together and remained loyal. I have always said you don't just join Manchester United, you join the family and long may that tradition continue.

"This club is steeped in history and I feel privileged to have become a part of that. Over the past nine years I have met and worked with some incredible people, many of whom will remain friends for life. I would like to thank everyone at the club - teammates, coaches and in particular all the staff who made every single day in Carrington or at Old Trafford a special day."

Evra, who won five Premier League titles and the Champions League in 2008, also thanked United's fans for their support.

"My biggest thanks go to the fans," added Evra, who served as United vice-captain from 2010. "We have had some fantastic times together, we lifted all of those trophies together and that night in Moscow will live with us all forever. Every single time I stepped out in that shirt I knew I was playing for the badge and for a very special club.

"My passion for this club will live on and I know you guys will go on to enjoy more success in the coming seasons."

The deal had been expected to go through several weeks ago, but the departure of Juventus coach Antonio Conte created doubts over the transfer until his replacement, Massimiliano Allegri, opted to proceed.

The sale of Evra means United have now lost their three senior defenders this summer, with Nemanja Vidic joining Inter Milan and Rio Ferdinand being released before eventually signing for Queens Park Rangers.

United prepared for life after Evra by signing Luke Shaw from Southampton for an initial £27m but, after also selling Alexander Buttner, may need to sign a second left-back in the space of a few weeks.

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