Uwe Huenemeier says he leaves Brighton full of pride.
The German defender returns to Paderborn as his contract expires in June.
He told The Argus: “It was a bit like a roller coaster here. We came really close in the first year. Then I had my injury, which was a big blow to me.
“We came close at the end of the season, we didn't make it “Then last year we stepped up in that way again as a team, we got 92 or 93 points again."
Huenemeier has had to take rough with smooth but insisted: “It is a great experience to go abroad as a German player and we have been really successful here.
“I have been part of a great team, a great club.
“It was much better than I ever believed.
“I am really pleased that I've done it.
“I'm always looking back with much joy and I will definitely come back sooner rather than later."