The rumors of Miguel Ibarra's impending departure from Minnesota United began yesterday, and on Thursday, his club confirmed that the 2014 NASL MVP would be leaving the club at the conclusion of the NASL spring season. Ibarra will be joining Liga MX side Club Leon, but had the following message for his teammates and fans before his final game with the Loons:
"First of all I want to thank the organization for everything they've done for me, they have opened the doors for me to start my career in the beautiful state of Minnesota. They have worked so hard and that's why the team is where they are now, bigger and stronger than ever. I want to thank Bill and Nick for believing in me and for having faith in the team. I want to thank Manny and Carl for always pushing me. They helped me grow as a player and without their guidance none of this would have been possible."
"I want to thank my teammates, my brothers - they've always pushed me and always helped me get out of my slumps. They pushed me every day at practice and again I wouldn't be where I'm at without them. Last, but certainly not least, I want to thank all of our amazing fans and especially the Dark Clouds. I will never forget the most amazing fans I've ever seen who are so dedicated to the game. I will miss everything about Minnesota, the fans, the organization, the team, the state, the city - not the cold though! Thank you again, Minnesota will always be in my heart. Once a Loon, always a Loon."
The rumored fee for Ibarra was said to be around $1 million, a price that had helped keep several MLS sides at bay. As part of the deal, Leon will play a July friendly in Minnesota, in which Ibarra will play 45 minutes for each club.