Dimitri Payet broke down in tears as he said goodbye to Marseille in a press conference on Friday. The 36-year-old’s contract was due to expire in June 2024, but club officials decided to terminate his agreement one year early.
Payet said that he was “devastated” by the decision, but that he understood the club’s reasons. “I want to leave through the front door,” he said. “Even at 36, I still have goals that keep me awake. I tell myself that I can’t stop until I win something with the club.”
Payet joined Marseille in 2013 and quickly became one of the club’s most important players. He helped them to win the Coupe de France in 2016 and 2017, and was named Ligue 1 Player of the Year in 2017.
He left Marseille in 2017 to join West Ham United, but returned to the club two years later. In his second spell at Marseille, Payet helped them to reach the Europa League final in 2018-19.
Payet is a popular figure among Marseille fans, and his departure will be a blow to the club. He is expected to join another Ligue 1 club in the coming weeks.