Jack Wilshere has played his final game as an Arsenal player.
The news broke on Tuesday night that Wilshere would not renew his contract and would see his deal out until its terminus on July 1st. Club and player have been in talks over a renewal for several months now and Wilshere took the executive decision to seek greater game-time.
After the departure of Arsene Wenger this summer, Wilshere believes he will struggle for first-team minutes under new manager Unai Emery.
Abridged from his full length statement on Instagram, the 26-year-old noted: “Such was my desire to stay that I had in fact recently agreed to sign a financially reduced contract in order to commit my future to the club.
“However, following my meeting with the new manager I was made aware that, although the reduced contract offer remained, it was made clear to me that my playing time would be significantly reduced should I decide to stay."
Wilshere's emotional departure
Wilshere can often be a divisive character amongst Arsenal fans and has left supporters wanting with some of his late season performances in 2018-19, but nobody could ever doubt his undying love and passion for the club.
The fact he almost committed his future to Arsenal again in the face of a pay-cut just about says everything about Wilshere and his boyhood club.
As a result, both his full statement and the reaction to it has been punctuated with emotion - it's no ordinary announcement of departure.
Cazorla's beautiful Instagram comment
And while several big names in football - including Ian Wright - have react to the news, one of the most poignant responses came from Santi Cazorla.
Another midfielder to leave Arsenal this summer, the much-loved Spaniard almost lost his foot during surgery after a freak injury recently and endeared himself to Gooners across six years at the club.
Now he's replied to Wilshere and, frankly, it's just beautiful. Check it out below:
A moment of appreciation for Cazorla.
The Spaniard's comment has already amassed thousands of 'likes' on Instagram and it's easy to see why, with the 33-year-old speaking from his heart.
Cazorla asks Wilshere to join him, before heralding him as both a brilliant player and person.
While it's hard to see Wilshere following his old Spanish teammate, it's quite the thought and no doubt both players will go onto enjoy their game wherever they play next.
The departure of Wilshere is yet another reminder of the unheralded change unfolding at Arsenal this summer.
Gooners are very excited to see what the future holds, even if they're sad to see some major departures.
All the best for the future, Jack.
Do you think Wilshere has made the right decision in leaving Arsenal? Have your say in the comments section below.