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The rumors that have been surrounding Patrick Vieira and New York City F.C for the last two months are finally put to rest as he’ll be stepping down.

New York City F.C’s head coach hunt begins today as Patrick Vieira will be stepping down for his appointment at France’s Ligue One’s Nice. The report was confirmed by ESPN late Sunday afternoon.

The rumors were floating around for quite some time, but Vieira was real firm on his decision to finish the season off with NYCFC. It seemed to be believable as NYCFC was off to a roaring start and are currently in second place of the Eastern Conference with 28 points.

On NYCFC’s sister club Manchester City‘s website, Vieira explained that this decision was one of the most difficult ones in his career.

“Leaving New York is an incredibly difficult decision for me and for my family and one that has not been taken lightly.”

When Vieira came on as a new manager, it was clear from the beginning that NYCFC was a stepping stone for his managerial career. NYCFC was his first professional coaching job, and there was no doubt Vieira was going to leave at some point.

The NYCFC faithful took some time to warm up to Vieira, but after seeing his style and success, he got their approval.

“Our incredibly passionate fans have made this one of the most special experiences I’ve had in football. Thank you to each and every one of you that stands by the team day in and day out.”

After the 1-1 draw against Atlanta United, Vieira declined to comment if he would be leaving or not, which is something he never does.

The word around town was that Vieira would be succeeding Arsenal’s Arsene Wenger, but that was a little bit far-fetched. To deserve a job like that, Vieira’s manager resume needed to be longer.

Taking the Big Apple’s club to the playoffs in consecutive seasons, Vieira changed the culture. The Arsenal legend brought in some fresh talent from around the world that really balanced out on the pitch. He brought in the European tactics that MLS has been lacking for quite some time and capitalized with it.

Nice, finished in eighth place this season in France’s Ligue One, but are expected to lose their top goal scorer Mario Balotelli. Along with Vieira leaving, three assistants will be following him as well including Christian Lattanzio, Kristian Wilson, and Matt Cook.

With Vieira out, the question now is, who’s in?