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'I am leaving': 26-year-old sends message on Twitter after terminating his Arsenal contract

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Arsenal confirmed yesterday that 26-year-old goalkeeper Dejan Iliev has left the club after terminating his contract.

The North Macedonian shot-stopper joined the Gunners back in September 2012. He spent over nine years at Arsenal, but he failed to break into the first team despite showing a lot of promise early on.

Arsenal’s goalkeeping department is very strong at the moment. Aaron Ramsdale and Bernd Leno are first and second choice respectively, while Arthur Okonkwo, Karl Hein and James Hillson are next in line.

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Iliev, 26, was never going to get into the senior squad and he has decided to make a career elsewhere.

Dejan Iliev sends farewell message after terminating Arsenal contract

Iliev was on loan at Slovakian Super League side SKF Sered but he cut short that deal to return to Arsenal.

Upon returning to London Colney, he sat down with the club’s chiefs and requested to have his contract terminated. Arsenal obliged and the shot-stopper is now a free agent.

Having spent almost a decade as an Arsenal player, Iliev has nothing but fond memories of his time in North London, even though he never quite got a chance with the senior side.

He took to Twitter to say goodbye to everyone at Arsenal yesterday.

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Arsenal goalkeeping department is in a fantastic place at the moment and Iliev was never going to get a chance. He’s right to leave and make a career of his own elsewhere, but the Gunners might have to dive into the market for a new goalkeeper in the summer.

Leno lost his place to Ramsdale earlier in the season and it doesn’t look like he’ll be the first-choice at Arsenal ever again.

With the World Cup coming up at the end of this year, the German will look for regular game time. That’s not possible at Arsenal, which is why he’s very likely to push for a move away before the start of next season.

Arsenal will need to replace him with a top-quality option in the summer and it will be really interesting to see who Edu and Mikel Arteta will go for.

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