Barcelona’s Gerard Pique announces his retirement after a brilliant career | Soccer News

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BARCELONA: Barcelona’s Gerard Pique announced his retirement on Thursday after a decorated career, saying “now is the time to end this journey”.
“Saturday’s game (against Almeria) will be my last in Camp Nou“, posted the 35-year-old player on Twitter.
The veteran defender bows out with four Champions League titles and the 2010 World Cup and Euro 2012 with Spain.
“I wanted to tell you that I’ve decided the time has come to end this journey,” he said in a music video of the star looking at footage of himself as a baby boy wearing the Barcelona jersey, or running after autographs.

“There is no other team after Barca,” he added.
“I will become a super fan, I will support the team and pass on my love for Barca to my son.”
“And sooner or later, I’ll be back,” he concluded.
Arriving at Camp Nou aged 10, Pique left his hometown for Manchester United’s academy in 2004, winning a maiden Champions League trophy under manager Alex Ferguson in 2008.
He then returned to Catalonia, helping Barca win eight La Liga crowns, seven Copas del Rey and three Champions League titles in 2009, 2011 and 2015.
Pique takes time off with Barca knocked out of the Champions League for the second consecutive season.
A sports icon in Spain, he also had celebrity status as the partner of Colombian singer Shakira.

They met while filming the video for Shakira’s 2010 World Cup anthem, Waka Waka.
Shakira sang the official song ahead of the closing ceremony of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, with Pique’s Spain beating the Netherlands 1-0 in the final at the Soccer City stadium in Johannesburg.

The couple, who announced their separation in June, have two children.
Pique mixed playing with a burgeoning business career, founding sports events company Kosmos which was behind the redesign of tennis’ Davis Cup.

Kosmos and Pique have courted controversy over the payment they received for helping arrange Spain’s Super Cup transfer to Saudi Arabia.

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