Diego Lopez's move to AC Milan marked the end of an eventful stint in La Liga, and the former Real Madrid goalkeeper has penned a heartfelt and emotional open letter to the club and their fans after moving on.
Lopez, who famously ousted club legend Iker Casillas and performed creditably under Jose Mourinho and Carlo Ancelotti, began his career at Real Madrid, only to be sold in 2007. His return marked the fulfilment of a dream, and his letter conveys as much.
Diego Lopez pens a heartfelt letter to Real Madrid fans after leaving the club he supported for AC Milan. pic.twitter.com/RaJe5GQJk5— Bleacher Report UK (@br_uk) August 14, 2014
In full, Lopez writes:
32 years ago I was born in a small village in the province of Lugo, Paradela. I dreamed about one day becoming a footballer, but I never imagined that I would one day play for my club, that of my heart, Real Madrid. It is something that I will always be proud of. For this I have to thank the club and its president, Florentino Perez, for giving me the chance to defend this badge.
For an academy player to return to the club of their life is the most amazing thing.
Thanks to two great managers (Jose Mourinho and Carlo Ancelotti) and their respective coaching teams for their confidence, for everything I have learnt from them; for giving me the chance to compete, which is the essence of sport.
Thanks to all my teammates, the physios, doctors, groundsmen and all club employees. It has been a privilege to have shared such moments of great happiness with you; thanks for always treating me with such warmth. I wish all of you the best.
And of course, my sincere thanks to Madrid's fans, this enormous family found all over the world. Thanks for your support and for your strength during this time: you will always be in my heart.
I leave happy, because I have given my all. My only objective was to work day upon day with respect, dedication and to passionately defend the values of the best club in the world.
For all of this I can say with great pride that every minute I spent with Real Madrid was like a gift sent from the heavens.
¡Hasta el final, vamos Real!
From a Madrid fan.