Marseille legend Mandanda departs after record 613 games for Ligue 1 giants
Marseille have announced goalkeeper Steve Mandanda has left the club via mutual agreement, two years ahead of his contract expiring, having played a record 613 times for the club.
Mandanda, who has 34 caps for France and served as understudy to Hugo Lloris during Les Blues' 2018 World Cup win, extended his contract at the Stade Velodrome in August 2020 to run until the end of the 2023-24 season.
But Marseille announced on Wednesday that he would depart earlier than anticipated, amid links with fellow Ligue 1 sides Rennes and Nice in recent weeks.
"Olympique de Marseille and Steve Mandanda have decided to separate by mutual agreement," read a statement on the club's website.
"OM would like to sincerely thank Steve for everything he has brought to the club since 2007. With 613 games in the Olympian jersey, he has unquestionably become an Olympian legend.
"The club wishes him the best for the future."
Mandanda's mammoth appearances tally is the highest in Marseille's history, and every one of them came as a starter after he joined the side – initially on loan – from Le Havre in 2007.
But the 37-year-old made just nine appearances, keeping five clean sheets, as Marseille finished as Ligue 1 runners-up last season, having lost his number one spot to former Real Betis and Roma goalkeeper Pau Lopez.
While he spent 15 years on Marseille's books, Mandanda did spend one season in the Premier League with Crystal Palace in 2016-17 before returning to Stade Veledrome as a free agent.