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byJimmy Rice 07 May 2007 When Liverpool walk back into the dressing room after the final home game of the season on Saturday, a lone figure will remain standing on Anfield's hallowed turf. For the match is not only the fans' opportunity to wave goodbye to our Athens-bound heroes, it's also their last chance to bid farewell to an Anfield legend. It is with a heavy heart that Jerzy Dudek will leave the club in the summer, and the Pole has a little bit of unfinished business before he departs. "I have 40,000 thank-yous to say, so it will take me a while," the 34-year-old told LFC Magazine. "It would be nice to play in the last game against Charlton. I would get to walk around the pitch and take it all in. I could hear the fans singing again. I don't know if it will be possible, it's up to the manager when he picks the team. "I just want to say goodbye. If it is not possible then I will be the last person left on the pitch after the Charlton game." Dudek's decision to leave is a result not of any personal differences, nor any ill-feeling towards the club. In fact, he insists he would have been happy to remain at Melwood for the rest of his career had he been selected to represent Poland in last year's World Cup. He explains: "I was watching TV at home, just with Sky Sports News on in the background while I was doing some things and waiting for something else to come on – as you do. "I actually saw a breaking news story come along the bottom of the screen: Jerzy Dudek is not going to the World Cup. I froze. "At first I thought it was a joke from the Polish manager, but then I saw that our star striker was not going, and two other senior players were already out. It wasn't a joke. "Something changed in me after that snub. From being happy to play here and press Pepe, I knew I had to go somewhere to play every week." It is a sign of Dudek's loyalty to the club that he postponed his decision to leave at the request of Rafa Benitez. "The needs of the team were more important to me than my own needs. Scott Carson was going to Charlton and the manager could not get any cover, so I stayed. "Now I am going this summer. I am out of contract and I need to play football. I am still hungry to play and put the disappointment of the World Cup behind me. "I know I will not move somewhere and find a nicer club than Liverpool. I love this city and love this club. If I had gone to the World Cup then I would have stayed here forever. I told Rafa that too. I would have done everything I wanted to do in my career. "I will not play with better players or make more friends than I have here. Wherever I go from here will be a definite step down in my career." So, what's next for one of our heroes of 2005? Well, one thing's for sure: he won't ever be coming back to Anfield as an opposition keeper. He said: "I just can't imagine walking into Anfield on matchday, walking out of the tunnel and going down to the Kop end – and then hoping to see Liverpool lose. "This club has been my life for five years. I have become much more than an employee – I am a fan. "I don't know how I will feel when I walk out of this place for the last time, but I imagine it will be very emotional and I can see tears in my eyes. I am not looking forward to it at all."

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