Manchester United and former England international Gary Neville has announced his retirement from football.
Neville has decided to hang up his boots with immediate effect, following a stop start few years for the defender.
The former United captain, who has won over 600 caps, has struggled with injuries for the past few years. Neville battled hard for two seasons to make a comeback last year, and played in some important games for manager Alex Ferguson.
However, this year Neville has found his chances limited, and when called upon has looked a shadow of his former self.
The now former United defender is also England’s most capped right back, having played 85 caps for his country. Neville spoke of his admiration for United and manager Alex Ferguson, and his disappointment at having to retire.
“Obviously I am disappointed that my playing days are at an end, however it comes to us all, and it’s knowing when that time is and for me that time is now.” Neville stated.
“There are so many people I want to thank and of course top of that list is Sir Alex Ferguson.I have been a Manchester United fan all my life and fulfilled every dream I’ve ever had”.
Neville’s loyalty has never been questioned, and has been all too clear to see on many occasions.
His infamous crest kissing to Liverpool fans when they played United, and his snubbing of Peter Schmeichel in a Manchester City jersey will always be remembered.
Sir Alex Ferguson spoke of his admiration for Neville, and described him as ‘the best right back of his generation’.
“He is an example to any young professional; hard-working, loyal and intelligent. As a United fan born and bred, his fantastic career at Old Trafford has cemented his place in the affection of the club’s supporters everywhere” stated Ferguson.
“As a young boy he had the will and determination to succeed as a footballer and that character remained with him throughout his career which is the legacy he leaves every young player at Manchester United.”
Neville is now being tipped for a coaching role at Manchester United, and it is hard to believe the hot headed right back has played his last game for United.
Love him or hate him, he is arguably the best right back to ever grace the Premier League.