Nemanja Vidic says his ‘heart will always be at this club’ as he prepares to bid farewell to Manchester United.
The commanding centre-half will bring the curtain down on a glittering nine-season stint at Old Trafford in the summer.
An agreement to take him to Italian giants Inter Milan as a free agent has already been agreed and he will be opening a new chapter in 2014/15.
Vidic will, however, be forever grateful to United for offering him an opportunity to grace the very top of the game and land 10 major honors – including five Premier League titles.
After his final appearance at the Theatre of Dreams in Tuesday’s 3-1 victory over Hull City, the 32-year-old Serb spoke to Sky Sports about how difficult it will be to sever ties with United.
"It was hard in many ways – first because it was my last game at Old Trafford, as well we didn’t have a great year. I think it is the first year in my eight years that we didn’t celebrate a trophy, which is hard," he said. "It was a tough season and we had a tough game at Old Trafford. It was very emotional.
"I have to say that my heart will always be at this club. I have spent so many years here. I have been part of this good time at United and worked with so many great people. I will always be here and always watch United. I want to say a big thank you from the bottom of my heart. The fans have been fantastic to me from the first day and it was a pleasure to play for them.
"I also have to say thank you to all of the players that have played with me, the managers – especially Sir Alex (Ferguson), he was great to me – and to all the coaches and all of the staff."
Vidic will end his days at United working under interim boss Ryan Giggs, a man he believes is destined to land the top job on a permanent basis at some stage.
Pressed on whether the Welshman could be offered the post now, amid mounting talk of an imminent appointment for Dutch coach Louis van Gaal, Vidic said: "It’s hard to say. That is up to the board to decide. But I have to say that for Ryan, it has been really good to work with him in the last few days. I think he has a talent to be a manager, and to be a good manager. If he doesn’t succeed this time, I think in the future he should be considered as a manager of this club."
Vidic also sees a bright future for the team-mates he is leaving behind, with youngsters such as Adnan Januzaj and two-goal debutant James Wilson offering a glimpse of what the next few years could hold with eye-catching displays against Hull.
He added: "I think it is good to have young players coming through the youth system, and that’s encouraging for coaches as well and players to keep working hard. They know that if they work hard they will get opportunities and show what they are capable of.