Angel Gomes explained the time had come to close a “beautiful chapter” in his life after ending his long association with Manchester United.
The talented 19-year-old is out of contract and is reportedly set to join Lille, although he will be loaned out to Portuguese club Boavista from the Ligue 1 outfit for the 2020-21 season.
Gomes came through United’s youth system and was handed his first-team debut by Jose Mourinho in May 2017, coming on as a late substitute against Crystal Palace.
However, opportunities have been limited for the England youth international since – his only three starts in the 2019-20 campaign came in the Europa League – and he has opted to move on to further his career.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer had already confirmed the Red Devils had failed to reach an agreement over a new deal, with Gomes publishing a farewell message on his Instagram account on Tuesday.
“Sadly the time has come to end a beautiful chapter that has been my life for 14 years,” Gomes wrote to accompany a video montage of his time at United.
“Being from Salford, Manchester United is all I have ever known. I went from playing on my estate, pretending to be Wayne Rooney, to being in the academy and doing the same. May 21, 2017, I made my Premier League debut for the club of my dreams aged 16, replacing the legend himself Wayne Rooney.
“I want to thank every single individual at the club for the help and encouragement I received, from the very first time I signed at the club. I want to thank all the coaches from every age group that looked after me from six to now.”
Gomes also added his appreciation for both the club staff and United fans after confirming the time was right to make the “next step” in his career, signing off: “Once a RED always a RED”.
Lille are yet to officially confirm the signing of the versatile playmaker, though French media claim Gomes will join on a five-year deal.
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