New Arsenal midfielder Mikel Arteta feels that it was the right time in his career to leave Everton and progress to playing for a club competing in the Champions League.
The Spaniard left the Toffees on deadline day to join the north London outfit, signing a four-year contract after a fee thought to be in the region of £10 million had been agreed between the two clubs.
Prior to his departure to join the Gunners, Arteta told evertonTV: "It is a big opportunity for me and my family and I think it is the right time for me to take it.
"It is a big challenge, a different challenge, fresh for me and I want to see myself on the biggest stage, the Champions League.
"I am 29 years old so I haven't got much time left to take a chance like this one. I think I have done my best for Everton.
"I always try hard, I have been as professional as I could and I was grateful for the support and the love that the club and the fans showed me."
Having spent six-and-a-half years plying his trade at Goodison Park, the midfielder was thankful to the club that helped him establish his career in England.
Arteta added: "It is very difficult to say goodbye. I still can't believe it but at the same time I think it is the right moment for everyone.
"That is the way football is, there is always a start and an end and today is the end of probably the best time of my career. I am never going to forget it.
"It has been crazy. It has been a crazy day. I can't believe what happened, and the way it happened but as I said, that is part of football and I am going to be playing for another club soon.
"Obviously I am never going to forget what I have done here and what the people and this club have done for me."