Friday, 10 May 2019

Brighton captain Bruno calls time on career

Brighton and Hove Albion captain Bruno will retire from playing after this weekend's Premier League match against Manchester City.

The 38-year-old has made 234 appearances for Brighton since joining from Valencia in 2012, including 13 starts in the Premier League this season.

Bruno, a member of the Brighton squad promoted from the Championship in 2017, has been offered the chance to remain at the Amex Stadium in a non-playing capacity.

Sunday's meeting with title-chasing City will be Bruno's final game, and Pep Guardiola revealed he was keen to bring the former Espanyol defender to Barcelona when he switched from Almeria to Valencia in 2009.

"Bruno played in Almeria when I was at Barcelona. We wanted him to come," City boss Guardiola told a pre-match news conference. "He's had an incredible career in England.

"He's 38 but so fit, so professional and feels this is the moment. Hopefully we have a good game and I will congratulate him for his incredible career."

The right-back has played more than half his career on the south coast, having played over 150 games in total in Spain.

He has managed six goals and 19 assists in his time in England and is a real fan-favourite at the Amex Stadium.

Despite representing both Almeria and Valencia since leaving Espanyol's youth ranks, no transfer fee has ever been paid for Bruno, with each of his permanent transfers coming at the end of his contract.

He was a crucial part of the squad that came into the Premier League, although his influence has waned this season with the arrivals of Martin Montoya, also from Valencia, and Bernardo from RB Leipzig who have shared game-time with the Spaniard.

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