French club Olympique Lyonnais have announced an agreement with Manchester United for the transfer of Brazilian right-back Rafael, who is set to sign a four-year contract at Stade de Gerland.
The 25-year-old underwent a medical in Lyon today and will be officially unveiled at a press conference this week.
It brings to a close an eight-year association with United after Rafael joined the club alongside twin brother Fabio. He made his first-team debut against Newcastle in August 2008 and went on to make 170 appearances for the Reds, scoring five goals.
Rafael was a popular figure with fans at Old Trafford and he tweeted: “I want to thank Manchester United fans for all the love during those eight years.”
His former colleagues took to Twitter to pay tribute to their departing teammate. David de Gea posted a picture of himself with Rafael during United’s 20th title celebrations in 2013: “You are one of the best guys that I know. I am sure that you will succeed in your new adventure, you’re top.”
Ashley Young replied to Rafa’s earlier tweet, saying: “All the best Rafa aka Rafinho, wish you all the best at Lyon.” And Phil Jones added: “Good luck Rafael in the start of your new adventure! Top player and top professional!”
Everyone at the club would like to wish Rafael well in the future.