FOR THOSE WHO LOVE FOOTBALL
Clarence Seedorf's press conference started at 12.20 in the Milan offices in Via Turati where the Dutchman bid Milan farewell. Also present was club CEO Adriano Galliani, who started the day praising one of the greatest players in Milan history.
"Clarence has won four and a half Champions League titles. He won with Ajax, with Real Madrid, where he was about to win again when he moved to Inter, and twice with us. When Milan played well, which happened often, each and every time it occurred Seedorf played an amazing match. He is a world class player. He has played wide in midfield and as a support midfielder to the strikers at the highest level. In Munich in 2007 he was decisive in a fundamental match. It took a lot of work to bring him to the club. In 2002 he agreed to come to Milan and made his debut against Liberec. That same evening we had brought back Costacurta into the fold and had bought Nesta, creating a Milan side that remained at the summit of the UEFA ranking for five years. It was a fantastic Milan. You didn't need to be a genius to understand how good Clarence was. In the extraordinary Ajax team, which also had Kluivert, I fell for Seedorf. I think now he can go on and achieve everything. He is a person with many facets. He will succeed as a coach or as a director when he decides to hang up his boots."
Clarence then took to the microphone: "I am leaving after 10 wonderful years. I arrived here at a delicate moment in my career, after having thought long and hard, and now I will do the same. I have to consider many aspects. I am looking for a project that convinces me. I am delighted about how my experience at Milan went. They were intense years, the seasons just flew by, as happens with all the beautiful things in life. I'd like to thank the club president and Adriano Galliani, all of the staff and everybody at Milanello. As for the fans, I would like to have the chance to thank them in a dignified way when the right moment comes along. I thank Italy, which has been my home for 13 years, and where I have brought two children into the world. There will always be a special bond, especially with the city of Milan. It has been an important adventure, half of my career I have lived in Milan with many different team-mates, who have allowed me to always be competitive. Nothing was premeditated, I had decided nothing until a few days ago. My decision to leave Milan was reached not long ago. However, our relationship is such that had I asked for a year's extension we would have reached an agreement swiftly. Beyond the professional side of the working relationship, I have asked Dr Galliani for advice in my life. So, the possibility to continue to maintain a professional relationship in the future is open. I have spent more time in the last 10 years in Milan than with my family. Now I can continue my career elsewhere, choosing from a competitive range of options. But it won't be easy, I want to make the right choice."