Football

Raphael Varane bids Real Madrid farewell ahead of Man United transfer

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Raphael Varane has looked ahead to “a new chapter” ahead of his transfer from Real Madrid to Manchester United.

The clubs have agreed a fee believed to be worth £41m including add-ons for the France defender, subject to a medical and player terms being finalised.

Varane, 28, is departing after 10 years with Real Madrid, in which he has helped them win four Champions League titles and three La Liga crowns.

A post from Varane’s official Instagram account on Friday read:

“These last few days have been charged with many emotions, feelings that I now want to share with all of you.

“After 10 incredible and wonderful years at Real Madrid, a club that I will always carry in my heart, the day has come to say goodbye.

“Since I arrived in 2011, together we have exceeded all expectations and achieved things that I could never have dreamed of. I would like to thank all the coaches and all the people who work or have worked at the club for everything they have done for me.

“Many thanks also to all the Madridistas who always gave me a lot of affection and with their great demand they pushed me to give my best and fight for every success.

“I have had the honour of sharing a dressing room with the best players in the world. Countless victories that I will never forget, especially ‘La Decima’ (the 10th European Cup success in Real’s history, achieved in 2014). I realise that it has been a great privilege to have been able to experience such special moments.

“Finally, I want to thank all Spaniards and especially to the city of Madrid, where my two children were born. This country will always be special to me.”

Varane said it had been “an incredible journey in every way” and that he was leaving “with the feeling of having given everything and I will not change a single thing in this story of ours”.

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says Raphael Varane is a proven winner and Sir Alex Ferguson had tried to sign the France centre-back when he was in charge.

The message concluded: “A new chapter begins…”

Varane, a 2018 World Cup winner, is set to join England winger Jadon Sancho, whose move from Borussia Dortmund for £73m was completed last week, in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s squad ahead of the new season.

United have also re-signed goalkeeper Tom Heaton this summer following his departure from Aston Villa.

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