First of all I want to tell you all how difficult this was to write. We have just won The Double together. Something I have never done. We have shared 9 great months together. I have made so many new friends, people I truly respect. I have learned so much about myself. During the year we went through some very good times, but also some difficult ones. Last 4 months has been amazing and especially the last week winning the Cup and the League.
I have been asked a lot last few weeks about my future. Am I going to stay one more year or not. A lot of rumours have been going around. So instead of people talking and pretending to know everything, I’m going to tell you with my own words. And again, this was not easy, and the decision was even harder.
I have after a lot of consideration decided to not take another year at APOEL. This is a decision I took a few weeks ago. I spoke to Manduca and the President.I expressed my feelings. They really tried to change my mind. I didn’t want anybody to know as I wanted the focus to be on the Double. Team is more important then one player. So that’s why I now tell you this, so you can all see that my focus was always on the team and trying to do my best. I will not go into detail why I took this decision, but at the end I felt it was the right one for me and my career, but also for my family. After playing in France, England and Italy, Cyprus was a different step. It was a something I really wanted to try and do my best for the team. I wanted to win things. I wanted to show that I still had some years in me. Thanks to APOEL, I managed to do that.
Before I talk about the team, I want to thank the fans from the bottom of my heart for their support. I knew there was a lot of pressure on me when I came. The fans wanted to see the Riise from Liverpool. It took some time, but all I wanted was to show you that I always give 100%. I hope the last 4-5 months showed you all what you wanted to see. I am very very happy I managed to show you “The Riise Rocket “ you have all been waiting for. 6 goals and 10 assists or something is not bad for a left back. You are amazing fans with so much passion!!! Yesterday’s celebration was unbelievable and I’m very glad I was able to see this. I will always follow the team and I will always support you. I hope you all respect my decision. You have a friend for life and I feel proud to be a part of APOEL history. Keep supporting the team like you do and I’m sure you will have a lot of success. I will come and see you at the stadium, I will never forget!!
Thank you to all my teammates and everybody working for APOEL. You all made it very easy for me to feel welcomed. The players are all great people and I see you as my friends. You all were a part of history this year, for this I thank you. Good luck to all of you and I look forward following your careers and to see you all soon.
I want to thank the President. He gave me a chance to win trophies and make history. They really wanted me to stay at APOEL. They did everything they could to make me change my mind. It was a difficult decision for me, especially when I felt the love they showed me, and how much they wanted me to continue. So this is my choice only. The club and the president wanted me to stay. I can’t thank them enough for the effort they showed me.
APOEL will always be in my heart. Thank you everybody for everything you did for me this year. I could not do this without the support from all of you. Now I will have a long summer and decide what to do next. I could go back to Norway, but I do feel I have some more yeas abroad. I do hope I can have your support for the future.