- Willian has terminated his contract at Arsenal with two years remaining on his deal
- The Brazilian has decided to join Corinthians in his native Brazil
- He sent a parting shot to Arsenal fans where he strongly denied claims he joined the club for money
- Since joining Arsenal, Willian has been a shadow of his former self at Chelsea, where he spent seven successful years
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Former Chelsea star Willian has sent a message to Arsenal fans after sealing a move to Brazilian outfit Corinthians before the close of the summer transfer window.
Willian, 33, still had two years remaining on his deal with the Gunners but ultimately decided to terminate his contract to embark on a new chapter of his career.
He only played for one season at Arsenal, but his time with the Gunners was far from ideal as he struggled to establish himself under Mikel Arteta.
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Reports from Sky Sports indicate that his departure from Arsenal is set to save the club up to £20million (GHC 170m) as he was one of the higher-earning players at the club.
Willian’s hefty wages coupled with some torrid performances on the pitch had earned him his fair share of criticism from Arsenal fans, who could not fathom how he suddenly became a shadow of the player who won titles at Chelsea.
There were also suggestions that the Brazilian had only come to Arsenal for the wages, something he strongly refuted in his final message to the club.
In his statement shared on Monday, August 30, Willian started by saying:
"I would like to thank Arsenal for the opportunity they have given to me and for the warm welcome received by everybody at the club.”
"Unfortunately things on the pitch didn't go the way we had all planned and hoped, I received a lot of criticism especially from some members of the press that I had come here for financial reasons,” he went on.
The Brazilian went on to suggest that his decision to terminate his contract should be proof enough that he was not in the club for the money.
"I hope with my actions today explain to those people and they now understand that was not the case,” He said.
Not only is Willian set to save Arsenal a huge sum of money, he has also reportedly agreed to a 70% pay cut to join Corinthians.
Having joined the Premier League in 2013, he leaves England having won two Premier League titles, the FA Cup, League Cup and Europa League.
At Chelsea, Willian managed 63 goals in 339 appearances.
Fans expressed concern over Willian's fitness
The last time Willian made headlines, he was being criticised by fans for his fitness levels.
The Gunners got off to the worst possible start in their pre-season campaign as they lost 2-1 to the Scottish side in a game in which Arteta started a number of young players.