He appeared accompanied by Jokin Aperribay and surrounded by the Board of Directors, Football Management, all the staff and the first team squad. Those who have been his teammates for so many years burst into applause at the appearance in which Asier Illarramendi announced that he will leave la Real at the end of the season.
He began by admitting that "it has not been an easy decision, I have given it a lot of thought and finally I think it is the best decision, both for me and for la Real. Our paths separate and I leave with sorrow because it is not easy to leave your home behind. They are my friends, my family, everything I love. But I am proud to have joined this club when I was eleven years old and to see how far I have come. I leave happy and proud. What I am is thanks to la Real".
Illarra was very emotional in his speech. "I also want to say that I leave in peace, calm, because I have given everything at all times and now new paths will open. I don't know what will happen, but what I felt is that my cycle here is over and we have to make way for the new generations that are coming on. I am happy to see young people joining the club” he said.
He wanted to thank everybody. "To Jokin, for treating me the way he has treated me, for transmitting the values of la Real, for trusting me to inherit Xabi Prieto's armband. Now I leave it in the best hands, those of Mikel. He is a great person and his values are immense. My mind is completely at rest on that score. To Roberto, Erik, teammates, staff ... I will surely miss you very much", said the player from Mutriku.
He also wanted to thank his family and the fans. "I will never forget the fans and the love and affection they have given me all these years. Yesterday I thought that winning the Cup was something big, but the love I have felt for the fans is bigger than that. Thanks to all of them".
It was with great emotion that the txuri urdin president spoke about Illarra. "I want to thank you for the love you have shown for la Real Sociedad. Representing what we want la Real to be, the younger players, the future of la Real, is not easy. Your work has been extraordinary. You have always been a model, one of our most precious treasures," he concluded.
Once the appearance was over, Asier Illarramendi stepped on to the pitch with the Copa del Rey that he lifted in Seville in order to immortalize this moment surrounded by his teammates and all the members of the first team, the Sporting Management and the Board of Directors.