Robert Garrett says farewell for now to Linfield FC

Posted : 10th April 2013

Linfieldfc.com spoke to Robert Garrett about his imminent departure to Canada.

"I am really happy to get this opportunity to play full-time football again. It has always been my dream to play full time football. When I came home from England, Linfield gave me the chance to play full time football and it was great.

Going back to part-time football, especially this season hasn't been ideal. My fitness levels and my performance levels haven't been where they should have been.

This is a great opportunity that has come along to play full time football in Canada. It will give me the opportunity to get my fitness and playing levels back to where they should be.

It's a long way to go but this is a challenge and an opportunity that really appeals to me and in fact, really excites me. Playing in the MLS, we'll be playing our away games all over the United States, so it's a great opportunity to fly about all over North America playing games and seeing a great deal of exciting new places. It's a great chance to see a lot of the world.

Obviously, it'll help with Daryl and Albert already being over there. They are both really enjoying life in Canada and they speak very highly of the set-up and life in Edmonton.

I'm travelling over there in the next few days and I'm really looking forward to starting training. I'll be straight into training and obviously, I'll not be available for their next game which I think is in Carolina.

I know a lot of the Linfield players will be going into a summer break in a few weeks time but I can't wait to start training and get playing over there. I haven't played that many games lately and my form hasn't been as good as I would have wanted. As I haven't been playing that much, it's not as if I'm tired and burnt out after a long hard season. I just can't wait to get started over there and really give this opportunity my best shot.

I'm looking forward to meeting my new team mates. Daryl was away playing in Miami laat week, so it really is a great opportunity and it's one that really excites me.

Linfield are playing at Ibrox tonight and that will be great for all the lads to play in a fantastic stadium on what's sure to be a great occasion. Obviously, it'll be a big regret of mine missing out on such a special game as tonight's game at Ibrox but with me leaving soon for Canada, there's just too much for me to attend to here. I grew up supporting Rangers, so it would have been great to have got to play at Ibrox but it just wasn't to be.

Obviously, I'll miss what's sure to be a great game at Solitude on Saturday. There's a good rivalry there and their place is bound to be buzzing on Saturday. Hopefully, our boys can go there on Saturday and come away with a win that would put their title celebrations on hold for at least another week.

I'm leaving Linfield with a lot of sadness. I had to think long and hard about this decision. It certainly wasn't an easy decision. Linfield has been a really big part of my life. I've won 3 doubles here and it's a club I'll always love.

The manager, the players, the staff, the supporters at Linfield - absolutely everyone has been brilliant to me. I will really miss everyone and I can't thank everyone enough.

I'm in Canada until November and at that point the loan arrangement will be reviewed by Linfield and me. I know I have made 198 Linfield appearances and while I would have liked to have made the 200 landmark before I left for Canada, I will get the chance to bring up the 200 game milestone when I'm back home towards the end of the year. I have been very proud to have worn the famous royal blue jersey every one of those 198 times.

I just want to wish all the players and staff as well as supporters all the best for the summer period. There are a great bunch of people at Linfield. The club has handled my release in a thoroughly professional manner. Since I spoke to the manager and the board, they have been nothing but supportive and I can't thank them enough. The club has been brilliant to me and really helped me, as I take this big step moving forward in my life."

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