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Soccer-Puyol to leave Barcelona at end of season

Reuters

BARCELONA, March 4 (Reuters) - Barcelona captain Carles Puyol will leave the club at the end of the season following a persistent battle with a knee injury, he said on Tuesday.

The 35-year-old defender, a fans' favourite for his battling displays, has been restricted to just five league games this season and has decided to end his time at the Nou Camp.

Puyol, who made his Barca debut in 1999, has the second highest number of appearances for the club with 593, only bettered by Xavi Hernandez.

"I will leave FC Barcelona at the end of the season," he told a news conference.

"I have told the club the situation and we are both in agreement that it is the right decision. I will rescind the two years left on my contract.

"The injuries I have been suffering from have been worse than I expected and have not allowed me to play at my level." (Reporting by Tim Hanlon, editing by Ed Osmond)

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