Aaron Ramsey pays tribute to Arsenal fans after emotional Emirates send-off
PUBLISHED: 22:37 07 May 2019
PA Wire/PA Images
An emotional Aaron Ramsey paid tribute to the Arsenal fans after he was given his Emirates Stadium send-off on Sunday afternoon before he moves to Juventus this summer.
The Welshman, 28, has played his last game for the Gunners after a hamstring injury ruled him out for the rest of the season, and he was given a guard of honour by his teammates after the 1-1 draw with Brighton.
An emotional Ramsey cried on the pitch as the Emirates crowd sang his name one last time, with the midfielder paying tribute to their support during his 11-year spell in North London.
"It's been a pretty emotional day," said Ramsey.
"It's 11 years of my life that I have spent here and so much has happened to me on and off the field.
"I have really grown up here. I am just grateful for the opportunity to play for this club for such a long time.
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"I've met so many great people here, made great friends and Arsene bringing me to the club and giving me that opportunity was pretty special.
"To last this long, at a club like this, is something in itself. That doesn't happen very often anymore, that's why it's so emotional and why the bond is so strong.
"I just want to say thank you very much for all the fans' support over the years, there has been a few lows but lots of highs and the bond has been so strong because I have been here for such a long time and they have been with me through thick and thin, watching me go from a boy to man."
Ramsey joined Arsenal from Cardiff in 2008, winning three FA Cups during his time at the club, scoring the winning goal in both the 2014 final against Hull and 2017 final against Chelsea.
Danny Welbeck - who Unai Emery confirmed would leave the Gunners on a free this summer - and the retiring Petr Cech were also given a guard of honour on Sunday.
Cech will have the chance to end his career on a high, with the legendary goalkeeper hoping to lift the Europa League trophy in Baku on May 29 - if Arsenal make it past Valencia in the semi-final second-leg on Thursday night.
"I want to progress to the final and lift one last trophy. I think everybody at Arsenal deserves that, so I hope we can make it," he said.