<
>

Athletic Bilbao's Andoni Iraola to leave club at season end

Andoni Iraola, who has made the fourth-largest number of career appearances for Athletic Bilbao, has said he will leave the club at the end of the current season.

Iraola, 33, has a contract until June 30 by which time he will have played 12 seasons for the club.

Josu Urrutia, taldekide eta Lezamako teknikariekin batera, denboraldia amaituta taldea utziko duela iragarri du Andoni...

Posted by Athletic Club on Jueves, 30 de abril de 2015

"Every year it is more difficult to live up to the demands; wearing the shirt of Athletic is a huge responsibility," Iraola said during a news conference on Thursday.

Iraola joined Athletic in 1999 from San Sebastian-based club Antiguoko, initially starting with the youth team. In 2003 at 21 he debuted with the first team versus Barcelona under current Athletic manager Ernesto Valverde.

He played a total of 507 with 404 league appearances, the fourth-most in club history, as well as 46 European games, placing him second in the all-time list. He also played in 55 Copa del Rey matches. During his career at Athletic, Iraola received seven caps for Spain between 2008 and 2011.

Iraola said he has not yet decided what his next move would be. AS suggested he may consider MLS.

Athletic president Josu Urrutia confirmed Iraola's departure.

"Andoni Iraola will not be with us next season. To talk about Andoni is easy; it's talking about Athletic, we are very proud of him. His statistics and his conduct say it all."