This is not my story, but since it is an open letter, I guess I’m allowed to…haha. I just want to keep it closer to my heart, because I love this player so much and unlike some people, he chose to leave in peace. I’m glad I never blame him for the own goal. And I will always remember him as a great player who played for the greatest club.
PS: it was dated back in 2008 but I’ve just saw it days ago. I guess I wasn’t so frequent to lfc website back then.
An open letter from John Arne Riise
Dear fans of Liverpool FC,
After seven seasons at Anfield, it’s time for me to “walk on”. In many ways it feels inspiring and exciting to be familiar with the pressure of a new employer, meet new fans, meet a new culture and play a new kind of football. I look forward to this new adventure, but I travel with a loss.
Because, it’s not easy for me to leave you – the world’s best supporters! I’ve been thinking about this almost every day this summer. After seven wonderful seasons, and more than 340 matches for Liverpool, I never had the opportunity to make a real and proper goodbye with you – the world’s most motivating fans. You have always supported me and the team and I want you all to know how important you’ve been to me and the other players.
I’ve been giving my “thank you” to the club, the staff and the players and they’ll always have a special place in my heart. And this is my thank-you letter to all the fans out there that have been supporting me during these years. I will follow the team closely from Italy and will stay in touch with many of the players and many of my friends in Liverpool.
With respect to the many hundreds of great moments I have experienced in red, it will be unfair to draw up one highlight rather than another. There has always been the highlight of wearing the red shirt at Anfield. It’s always been a privilege to have the initials LFC on the space closest to the heart. As you all know I was a player who always, no matter what, gave 110 per cent in every training session and every game. I always tried to give you the entertainment you deserved. Even in the bad moments you were there for me and the team.
To play in front of the red crowd, every minute has been a privilege. Even after my unfortunate own goal against Chelsea in the Champions League semi last April – where all our dreams were crushed – I felt the support and sympathies from you as real and important. When I signed seven years ago, I couldn’t in my wildest dreams expect the journey you all gave me. I will always be grateful for that. A big thank-you to you all.
I’m 100 per cent sincere when I say that I will always remember all the great moments we’ve had and you – our fans – have such great importance for these great matches and great moments. Liverpool FC will have a lot more great moments like this in the future and I hope that I will experience great things with my new team – AS Roma. I hope you will continue to follow my career.
Therefore, I do not say goodbye, but so long. Arrivederci – Walk on!
John Arne Riise