Italy World Cup winner Daniele de Rossi is the first footballer to announce his retirement in 2020. De Rossi has retired at the age of 36.
De Rossi’s last team was Argentine side Boca Juniors, bringing to an end his 18-year career.
Prior to joining Boca, De Rossi spent his entire career at Serie A club Roma, who he played for 616 times.
The Italian, who won the World Cup in 2006, told a news conference he was retiring to spend more time with his family.
“I played against the best in the world and I was able to do the career I wanted,” De Rossi said.
“I am happy with my life, I played on two teams that I really love. One meant everything and the other got me inside as I expected”.
De Rossi is Italy’s fourth most-capped player with 117 caps and Francesco Totti is the only player to have made more appearances for Roma than the midfielder.
He rejected an offer of a director’s role at Roma at the end of last season and signed for Boca to continue his playing career, but he has been limited to just six appearances, largely because of injury.
“An absolutely fantastic football career comes to an end,” Roma said.
“Thank you for so many incredible memories, Daniele.”