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Carles Puyol and Barca agree to cut ties after season, further opening door for NYCFC

Mar 4, 2014, 12:22 PM EDT

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Injury-ravaged Carles Puyol has reached an agreement with Barcelona to sever his contract at the end of the season, opened the door for more speculation as to whether he could be headed for Major League Soccer… or retirement.

Puyol said doesn’t know what the future holds… other than a summer of rest. If New York City FC really was a destination for him to begin a new chapter, the idea of Puyol getting an extended “offseason” to prepare for his maiden voyage in the United States’ top flight may just be the tonic. Again, reports have said they want him to be their first Designated Player when they begin play in 2015.

But his quotes don’t exactly give much to go on, as he sounds like a beaten-up man who hopes to take the pitch at least once more for his beloved Barca.

“After the last two operations it has been difficult for me to recover the level I need to be able to continue here, more than I expected. That is why I have taken this decision.

“There are three months of the season left and I won’t be giving up.”

“I don’t know what I will do after 30 June, but I’m sure that in the summer I will rest.

“I would like to have a news conference at the end of the season to say a proper goodbye after a total of 19 years at the club.”

So perhaps he’s done, reaching the end of a long and storied career as one of the top backs in the history of the game. Knee injuries aren’t to be trifled with at any age, and they are even more problematic for a man about to turn 36 in April and who has had a very physical career.

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