Thursday 02 February 2017, 11:48

Lampard hangs up his boots

Former England midfielder Frank Lampard announced his retirement from football on Thursday, bringing an end to a 21-year professional career.

The 38-year-old, who spent last season with Major League Soccer side New York City, enjoyed a trophy-laden career during his 13-year spell with Chelsea, making 649 appearances for the Stamford Bridge side and claiming three English Premier League titles, one UEFA Champions League and one UEFA Europa League.

Lampard also featured for Premier League outfits West Ham United and Manchester City, as well as having a loan spell at Swansea City at the beginning of his career.

Regarded as one of the best midfielders of his generation, Lampard made 106 international appearances, scoring 29 goals, and represented England in three consecutive FIFA World Cup™ tournaments - Germany 2006, South Africa 2010 and Brazil 2014. Lampard wore the captain's armband in his final game for the Three Lions, which came against Costa Rica during the Brazil 2014 group stage.

"After 21 incredible years, I have decided that now is the right time to finish my career as a professional footballer," said Lampard on his official social media pages. "Whilst I have received a number of exciting offers to continue playing at home and abroad, at 38 I feel now is the time to begin the next chapter in my life.

Lampard added: "Looking forward, I'm grateful to the FA for the opportunity to study for my coaching qualifications and I look forward to pursuing the off-field opportunities that this decision opens."