"Espanyol is the most important thing in my life"
Javi López, emotional at his farewell, says that "the greatest thing this club has is its fans" and affirms that "I am proud to have worn this jersey"
Javi López said goodbye this Monday at the RCDE Stadium's Juan Segura Palomares Auditorium, after thirteen seasons at the club. Visibly moved and surrounded by the club's directors and employees, Javi López acknowledged that “the greatest thing that this club has is its fans, the people who make it up. It's been very, very, hard in recent months seeing from within how we were going down and we couldn't get out, no matter how hard we tried to change things from all areas of the club. I am sure we will come back stronger, like the parakeets we are, and soon the team will be where it deserves to be”.
The player also admitted that “I have received countless expressions of affection. When you give everything you have, you can't ask for more. I've given it my best. I have put the club before my family, I have taken away from my family to give to the club, and it was still not enough to achieve the final goal of this season. But I have to look at the 13 years overall. Espanyol is a family”.
Of the 283 official matches that he has played as a parakeet, Javi López says: “I have lived many moments, I remember my first season, after a goal we scored against Valencia, I was trying to talk to Ernesto Galán and we couldn't even hear each other, the atmosphere was so incredible. I recall the reception of the fans in matches against our eternal rival, the reception before the game against Real Sociedad, or in difficult situations when Penya Juvenil came with their banner to encourage us. Also this season, in February, when the field and the Curva were opened and many fans came to cheer us on. I always say, the most important thing about Espanyol is its fans and the people who are working from within to make it better”.
In addition, the full back insisted that “Espanyol has given me everything. It has given me the opportunity to form a wonderful family, to have stability. It is a privilege and I am proud to have worn the Espanyol jersey. That is the greatest thing that I take with me. Even if I had three lifetimes I couldn't give back what Espanyol has given me. I like to focus on the positive, the good things, and the affection that I have received these past few days. I'm happy to have lived a great story, but with the bad taste in my mouth of not having left the team where it deserves to be. It will be a thorn that I will carry with me for life, I will have to take responsibility for that".
Javi again demonstrated his love for the blue and whites: “Espanyol will always have me for whatever they need. I have always been available to the entire club. Espanyol is my home. I have defended it all these years, I feel as if it were mine”.
Finally, the player did not want to end the press conference without a few words of gratitude: “Eternally grateful to the club. This club is the most important thing in my life. I put it on the same level as my family. I didn't want to finish without saying thank you to my wife, who has been there through the bad times. To my parents, my brothers, friends, the parakeet family, and the people inside Espanyol. My gratitude to the club, my club, its fans and employees is infinite”.
The CEO and General Director, José María Durán, presented Javi López with a commemorative jersey and a gold and diamond badge for his time in the blue and white club, and also dedicated a few words to the player: “Javi is part of our history, he is one of the sons of Espanyol. Espanyol will always love Javi López. He has been at the club for thirteen years, ten in the first team, five as captain, a whole career. There have been hard times, happy times. He has contributed so much to the club. Although this is a farewell, I hope it will be a see you soon”.