Dimitri Payet couldn’t hold back his tears as he announced that he would be leaving the club on Friday.
The 36-year-old leaves as a free agent despite expressing his desire to remain with the team with whom he has spent the most of his career.
Payet was in the midst of his second stint with the French club, having joined for £25 million from West Ham in 2017.
Payet has made over 300 appearances for Marseille during his career.
Dimitri Payet announces his retirement from Marseille
Pablo Longoria stated at a news conference on Friday that an emotional Dimitri Payet (36) will depart Olympique de Marseille. The former France international’s contract with Les Phocéens was set to expire in a year.
Payet has spent eight seasons at Marseille during his career. During that period, he appeared on 326 occasions for the club, scoring 78 goals and registering 95 assists. Longoria revealed Payet’s early resignation at the start of the conference, calling the choice “not an easy moment.”
Payet was dropped by Igor Tudor last season and had his playing time reduced. The Croat, on the other hand, left at the end of the season. It was unknown whether he was in Marcelino’s plans, but Payet indicated that before to the return to pre-season, he had a “honest, frank, and sincere” chat with Longoria, during which it was mentioned that he was surplus to needs.
The former West Ham United attacker then said that he was given a position on Marseille’s coaching staff, which he turned down. Payet feels he still has something to give – somewhere – and is not ready to retire.
However, Payet’s return to Marseille at the end of his laying career is still a possibility. “This isn’t a farewell; it’s a see you soon… “OM is your home,” Longoria explained.