Diego Godin confirms Atletico Madrid departure

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Atletico Madrid's Diego Godin (L) vies with Lokomotiv's Eder during the UEFA Europa League round of 16 second leg soccer match between Atletico Madrid and Lokomotiv Moskva in Moscow, Russia, on March 15, 2018. Atletico Madrid won 5-1. (Xinhua/Wu Zhuang)

Atletico Madrid's Uruguayan defender Diego Godin confirmed on Tuesday that he's leaving the club at the end of the season.

The 33-year-old, who has spent nine seasons with Atletico, has decided to join Inter Milan on a free transfer, putting an end to a career packed with success with the Spanish club.

Godin joined Atletico from Villarreal in 2010 and has made 380 appearances in all competitions, helping them to win eight major titles, including the Europa League in 2012 and 2018 and the 2013 Liga Santander.

He has been the heart of Atletico's tough-to-crack-defense under coach Diego Simeone and his absence both for his playing ability and leadership will be hard for the club to replace.

Godin said in the press conference that he has reached the "end of an era" with Atletico.

"These are my final days with Atletico and I wanted to tell you the affection I have for this club, because it isn't just a club; it is a family and a way of life and it is hard to say goodbye," said the defender.

"I am leaving with my head held high, knowing I have given my body and soul and I can leave with pride and calm... All I can do is feel gratitude for the club," added Godin. 

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