Mikel Arteta has a special message of thanks for supporters of Rangers and Everton

Mikel Arteta - Arsenal

The Spanish midfielder announced his retirement on Sunday and clearly still holds dear his time wearing royal blue.

Mikel Arteta - Arsenal

Mikel Arteta has given special thanks to Rangers and Everton fans in an emotional post on Twitter in which he confirmed his retirement from playing professional football.

The 34-year-old has brought his time on the pitch to an end after the struggles he has endured to stay fit in recent years, with the Spaniard having managed just 16 Premier League appearances since the end of the 2013-14 season.

Arteta hangs up his boots having played 536 competitive matches across a 16-year professional career in which he played for clubs including Paris Saint-Germain, Real Sociedad, and Arsenal.

Picture Supplied by Action Images

However, he clearly holds a particular fondness for his time wearing blue for Rangers and Everton, as he went out of his way to thanks Gers and Toffees supporters for the "respect and loyalty" they showed him.

The former Everton and Arsenal captain wrote in a long message on Twitter: "Throughout my playing career I was fortunate enough to play for some fantastic clubs.

"Moving to the UK was a big decision for me early in my career but it was without doubt the best decision I could have made and helped shaped both the player I became on the pitch as well as the person I am today off it.

Mikel Arteta of Everton celebrates scoring the third goal for his side

"I will never forget the support that I've enjoyed from the fans and people of all the clubs I played for in the UK. I must give a special mention to the respect and loyalty I've received from the Rangers and Everton fans over the years, as well as the support I got from the fans of PSG and Real Sociedad, without forgetting my first professional club Barcelona... Thank you all for everything."

Arteta became a fan favourite at Ibrox during his two seasons with Rangers and would subsequently become a key man for David Moyes' Everton after moving to Goodison Park six months after leaving Glasgow.

The midfielder has now chosen to bring his career to an end in favour of joining Pep Guardiola's new coaching staff at Manchester City.

Mikel Arteta - Glasgow Rangers

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