Frank Ribery to leave Bayern at end of season

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Franck Ribery of Bayern Munich shoots during the Bundesliga match between Bayern Munich and RB Leipzig in Munich, Germany, Dec. 19, 2018. Bayern Munich won 1-0. (Xinhua/Philippe Ruiz)

Franck Ribery will not extend his expiring contract and leave Bayern Munich after 12 years, the German record champions confirmed in an official statement on Sunday.

"When I joined Bayern a dream came true. The farewell won't be easy but we must never forget what we have achieved together," Ribery said. "We have won so much together, over 20 titles."

The attacking midfielder joined Bayern from Olympique Marseille in the summer 2007 and made overall 422 appearances providing 183 assists and 123 goals ever since.

Ribery has won over 20 titles and he still has the chance to add another two titles as Bayern are on the brink to seal their 29th Bundesliga title in the club's history. In addition, Bayern will encounter Leipzig in the German Cup final on May 25.

"Franck and Arjen are great players. Bayern have a lot to thank both of them. We will give them a great and emotional farewell. They helped to shape Bayern's most successful decade with fantastic football," Bayern's CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge said.

At the end of 2018, Arjen Robben has already announced his departure for the summer. The end of the current season will thus mark the end of the "Robbery" duo, which was feared by many defenders in Germany and Europe.

Ribery will continue to play football but has yet not indicated where he will play next. "I have not got a real plan for next season. I don't know where I will go to play football. Of course I will still be playing but I am not certain where yet."

Bayern Munich sit atop the Bundesliga standings with a four-point advantage and two rounds to spare. If third placed Leipzig lose to Bayern at the 33rd round, Niko Kovac's men could clinch the 7th straight Bundesliga title ahead of schedule on Saturday. 

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