News 24 March 2022

Jermain Defoe Announces Retirement From Football After 22 Years

24 March 2022

Former England striker Jermain Defore has announced his retirement from professional football at the age of 39.

The former West Ham and Tottenham player revealed the news on social media this morning (March 24).

“After 22 years in the game, I have decided to retire from professional football,” he wrote. “It’s been a really tough decision, and one I have discussed with my family and those closest to me.”

He added: “I made my professional debut at 17 years old in 1999, and I feel now is the right time to bow out,” he said. “I have had an incredible journey, and have met some amazing people in the game.

“Football will always remain in my blood, and it gives me great pride and satisfaction to look back on the blessed career that I’ve had. I now look forward to spending some quality time with my friends and family.”

After making his professional debut with West Ham in 2000, Defoe went on to play for Tottenham, Portsmouth, Sunderland and Bournemouth in the Premier League – where he’s the ninth highest scorer with 162 goals in 496 appearances.

He also spent a season at Toronto FC in the Major Soccer League, and won the Scottish Premiership with Rangers last year.

He scored 20 goals in 57 appearances for England and was part of the World Cup squad in 2010.

Defoe ends his career at Sunderland after signing a short-term deal with the club back in January.

“The love I have received and endured throughout my career will never be forgotten, and I will always have a special bond with you all,” Defoe said. “Thank you also to my amazing team mates, coaches, and staff for playing such an integral part in my career.

“Lastly, I want to say thank you to my mum. You gave me a ball at two years old, and you made me believe my dream could happen. All that I am is because of you, and I owe everything to you and God.”

[Image: Cosmin Iftode via Shutterstock]