Raphaël Varane, the celebrated French defender, will bid farewell to Manchester United at the end of the current season. The club announced Varane's departure after three years, marking the end of a tenure that began with high hopes following his £40 million ($50.2 million) transfer from Real Madrid in 2021.

Varane's arrival at Old Trafford was met with great enthusiasm, and he quickly became a vital part of Erik ten Hag's squad, contributing significantly to United's third-place finish in the Premier League and their Carabao Cup victory last season. However, injuries have plagued the 31-year-old defender this season, limiting his appearances and ultimately leading to the club's decision not to trigger a one-year extension that would have kept him until 2025.

Despite his struggles, Ten Hag has maintained that Varane could still play in the crucial FA Cup final against Manchester City on May 25. "We're planning for the last games. Not for tomorrow, but we hope for Sunday and then for the last game [against Manchester City in the FA Cup final]," Ten Hag stated, keeping the door open for Varane's potential return.

Varane has expressed his deep affection for Manchester United and its fans. In a heartfelt social media post, he said, "To you guys, supporters of Manchester United, it's been an amazing few years playing for this special club and wearing that shirt. The first time I went to Old Trafford as a Man United player, it was insane, the atmosphere was amazing. I fell in love with the club and the fans. You have to play for Man United to understand what that represents."

Reflecting on the emotional journey, Varane added, "Despite the fact we had a difficult season, I'm very positive for the future. The new owners are coming with a clear plan and a great strategy. I'll see you at Old Trafford to say goodbye for the last home game of the season. It's going to be a very emotional day for me, for sure."

With Varane's departure confirmed, Manchester United is already looking ahead to strengthen their defense. Sources indicate the club's interest in signing a new center-back this summer, with Fulham's Tosin Adarabioyo, who will be available on a free transfer, being a potential target. However, Newcastle United is reportedly leading the race for Adarabioyo's signature.

During his tenure at United, Varane made 93 appearances, his contributions on the field often hampered by injuries. His leadership and experience, however, left an indelible mark on the team. Varane's illustrious career includes winning the Champions League four times during his decade-long spell at Real Madrid.

As Varane prepares for his next chapter, speculation about his future continues. He has been linked with a possible move to Saudi Arabia or a return to his former club, Lens. Wherever he goes, his legacy at Manchester United as a dedicated and skilled defender will endure.

In parallel developments, United manager Erik ten Hag has addressed rumors about Bruno Fernandes' future, amidst reported interest from Bayern Munich. Ten Hag emphasized Fernandes' importance to the team, stating, "It's clear [he's important], not just now but in all his years here. He's shown he's an important player and created the most chances across the Premier League and scored important goals. He's so important for us."

Ten Hag also provided updates on other key players, noting that Lisandro Martinez is in contention for the upcoming match against Newcastle, while Marcus Rashford and Bruno Fernandes will undergo assessments.