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Jermain Defoe retires from football at 39

The Englishman had returned to Sunderland in January in what was his second stint at Wearside

Picture Courtesy of : Paulblank
Defoe photographed pre-match

Defoe photographed pre-match

Jermain Defoe today announced his retirement from professional football. The 39-year-old took to Twitter to reveal the news to the football community. 

 

Defoe made his debut as a 17-year-old in 1999 for West Ham and went on to make his name as one the most reliable strikers in the league.

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

 

“Thank you to all the fans from each club I've played for. 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.

 

“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.” read Defoe’s statement.

 

Defoe played 19 seasons in the Premier League, scoring 163 times. Out of the 163, 91 were for Tottenham - the club he played the most games for. He was awarded the Tottenham Hotspur Player of the Year in 2004.

Defoe next spent the longest at Sunderland and West Ham, starring for both clubs for 4 seasons each registering a combined 63 goals during the time. Defoe was Sunderland’s Player of the Season during the 2015-16 campaign.

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