Rio Ferdinand will leave Manchester United in the summer after not being offered a new contract.
“After 12 fantastic years, I have decided the time is right for me to move on,” said Ferdinand.
United are believed to have told Ferdinand they want him to come back and be a ‘Club Legend’ going forward, in recognition of what he achieved during his time with the club.
The position is an ambassadorial role that several other significant players from the club’s past have accepted.
“Circumstances didn’t allow for me to say goodbye the way I would have liked but I’d like to take this opportunity to thank my team-mates, staff, the club and the fans for an unbelievable 12 years that I’ll never forget. Winning trophies I dreamed about as a kid came true at this great club.