After almost seven years, over 200 appearances, one unforgettable promotion-winning season and a third consecutive season of Premier League football secured at Brighton & Hove Albion, club captain Bruno has hung up his boots.
The evergreen Spaniard, affectionately known as ‘El-Capitan’, announced his retirement earlier today, bringing an end to a glittering career at the ripe old age of 38.
After graduating through the youth system at Espanyol and subsequent loan switches at Gimnastic de Tarragona and UE Lleida, the full-back moved to UD Almeria and helped the club win promotion to La Liga for the first time.
The Spaniard moved onto Valencia in June 2009, linking up with current Arsenal manager Unai Emery, where he made 80 appearances in just over three years before making the eye-catching switch to Albion in June 2012.
Bruno featured regularly in his debut season at the club, making a total of 31 appearances across all competitions, scoring the first of his six Albion goals to date in the form of an unstoppable long-range volley against Bolton Wanderers in November that year.
An impressive fourth-place finish and play-off qualification was secured in his first season, followed by another 33 appearances and another run to the play-offs the following campaign.
Following a season of transition in 2014/15, the 2015/16 season held a proud record for the Spaniard, who started all 46 of the club’s Championship fixtures, and was named club captain the following summer after Gordon Greer’s departure.
His remarkable run of consecutive starts continued into the historic 2016/17 promotion-winning campaign, ending the total at 74, before returning from injury to help the Seagulls secure a first return to the top flight in 34 years.
A first-ever Premier League season ended in survival, and the skipper aptly led the side to a 1-0 safety-clinching victory over Manchester United at the Amex just over 12 months ago.
His final season on the south coast saw the defender break a Premier League record, held by Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs, as being the oldest duo to combine for a goal. That came when the full-back set up Glenn Murray to score the winner in a 1-0 victory over Wolverhampton Wanderers in October 2018.
With the 38-year-old set to grace the Amex turf for the final time on Sunday, Bruno will be remembered for his outstanding talents as a footballer, but most importantly for being a true gentleman.