Man United stalwart Antonio Valencia joins Ecuador champions LDU Quito on free transfer after 10 years at Old Trafford


ANTONIO VALENCIA has left Manchester United after 10 years at the club to join Ecuador side LDU Quito on a free transfer.

The 33-year-old former United captain has headed back to his homeland to sign for the national champions

Antonio Valencia unveiled at his new club in Ecuador
Antonio Valencia was announced by Quito in a Twitter video
The video shows his shirt hanging in the club dressing room
Antonio Valencia will wear his regular no25 shirt at his new club LDU Quito

Manchester United announced the star’s departure on their website with the message: “Antonio Valencia has returned to his native Ecuador by signing for LDU Quito.

“Good luck at your new club, amigo!”

LDU Quito won the Ecuadorian Serie A last year but this season they are currently seventh in the table.

Quito club statement said: “One of the most outstanding players in the history of Ecuadorian football, Antonio Valencia, has joined the Whites.”

Valencia made a total of 339 appearances during 10 seasons at the club, and won two Premier League titles, an FA Cup and a Europa League amongst others.

Man United fans wrote messages of support on Valencia’s Twitter page.

He was voted into the PFA’s Team of the Year in 2009-2010, and was United’s Player of the Year two seasons later.

Valencia started his career as a right winger at El Nacional in Ecuador and before moving to Spanish side Villarreal in 2005.

Antonio Valencia for Ecuador in action with Japan’s Daiki Sugioka in the Copa America

He spent a few months on loan at Recreativo before moving to Wigan, initially on loan, in 2006.

Sir Alex Ferguson rated him so highly he was handed the iconic No7 shirt in 2012, following legends like George Best, Bryan Robson, Eric Cantona, David Beckham and Cristiano Ronaldo.

However Louis van Gaal decided Valencia would be better off as a right back, and he spend the next four years in that role for United.

He made just nine appearances for United last season.

Valencia’s departure comes as United are spending £50million on Crystal Palace right back Aaron Wan-Bissaka.


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