Manchester City defender Joao Cancelo has completed a Deadline Day loan move to Bayern Munich, insisting he wants to play more, rather than a rift with Pep Guardiola, that saw him leave.
The deal is an initial loan with an option to buy the full-back for more than £61m (€70m).
Cancelo posted a goodbye message on his Instagram page on Tuesday which read: “Once a Cityzen, always a Cityzen. Thank you.”
Ruben Dias, Ederson and former City player Oleksandr Zinchenko were among the first to post supportive messages in reply.
The Portuguese international has had limited game time since returning from the World Cup, with Pep Guardiola changing the shape of his side.
Cancelo started 36 times for City in the Premier League last season, but has had a restricted role at City this term.
During his time in Manchester, Cancelo won two league titles and was twice named in the Premier League Team of the Year.
Cancelo later said at a press conference: “I’ve not had much game time in the past few weeks, which influenced my decision. There was speculation that my relationship with Pep was not the best, but fact is I wanted to play more.
“I really wanted to embark on this new adventure at such a club with such a big history. It’s a dream for me. I’m very happy to be here and to show my footballing qualities.
“I know that this club, this team, lives for titles and wins titles every year. I’m also driven by the hunger for success.”
Bayern have failed to win a game since the World Cup restart, starting the year with three consecutive 1-1 draws against Leipzig, Cologne and Eintracht Frankfurt. The team’s Bundesliga lead has since shrunk from four points to one.
Union Berlin, Leipzig and Borussia Dortmund are all within three points.
“We’ve signed him on loan now and have the possibility of signing him permanently in the summer,” said Bayern’s sports director Hasan Salihamidzic.
“Joao is a player we’ve been thinking about for a while now because we very much appreciate his qualities. He’s the optimal fit in our system with his attacking style of play and dynamism, and his mentality and experience fit very well in our team.”
“FC Bayern is a great club, one of the best in the world, and it’s enormous motivation for me to now play alongside these extraordinary players in a team,” Cancelo said.
“I know that this club, this team lives for titles and wins titles every year. I’m also driven by the hunger for success. I’ll give my best for FC Bayern.”