Lucas Leiva has announced his retirement from international football following a heart condition. He’s 36. The former Liverpool midfielder announced his decision in a press conference on Friday with tears in his eyes.
Lucas Leiva announces retirement from international football: emotional moment for the player
Making the retirement announcement in an emotional moment, Lucas Leiva stated that “health comes first.” In December, during a pre-season with his club Gremio, he had some problems that led to certain tests. Following the reports, he was advised to hang up his boots on medical grounds.
Leiva went emotional while speaking to the media. He said,
“It’s been a difficult period. I think this is the first time I have cried over this case. But I can only thank you. I’m ending where I’d like. I’m sure a new cycle will begin. I had a lot of hope that it could reverse, but it was not the case. My health comes first.”
A long career comes to a wrap
That announcement, there draws a full stop to Lucas Leiva’s long career, who had 247 appearances for Liverpool during his ten-year tenure at the club.
In 2017, he was sold to Serie A giants Lazio 2017 and played in Rome until his contract ended this summer. Following this, he signed up with his boyhood club Gremio where he spent his time between 2005 and 2007 before joining Liverpool at 20.
Club president Alberto Guerra said,
“I had prepared a beautiful speech, but I don’t know if I’d be able to say it all. I wanted to congratulate you on a successful career. I’m very happy that you’re going to go on with a normal life. I want to say on behalf of all the Gremistas that few have represented us like you.
That’s why so many people are moved by this moment. You are a great leader in the locker room that we all learned to respect.”