Claudio Cacapa has decided to leave Lyon in order to pursue a fresh challenge.
The Brazilian centre-back has turned down the club's final contract offer, citing a lack of first-team opportunities as the reason for his choice.
He has been at Stade Gerland for almost seven years and admits it was a difficult decision to reject the club's last proposal.
"I don't play any more here. I am disappointed, but it is football. There are worse things in life," Cacapa told But!
"So unfortunately I will leave. This is a difficult moment for me as I have known more joy than misfortune.
"I just want to thank the chairman, my team-mates but most of all the fans who have always been beside me, even when I was injured.
"This is the moment to leave. To take this decision, I discussed with all my friends in Brazil, my wife, my family.
"It hasn't been an easy decision to take, but I need another club, another ambition. I felt that my career wasn't advancing any more."
Speculation has suggested Cacapa's decision was influenced by a falling-out with manager Gerard Houllier, but he has refused to either confirm or deny the rumours.
He said: "I haven't discussed this with Gerard Houllier. I don't want to talk about him. I want to leave with dignity.
"I don't know why he left me on the bench.
"Lyon's Brazilians are outstanding men and players. I hope that they will stay here for a long time. They have talent. I can't see Lyon without Brazilians."
Cacapa added: "I hope to play at least three or four more years. I want to find my best level again.
"I am only 31 and can play until 34. I am not in contact with a French club.
"I will think but I want to stay in Europe."