Fernando Morientes retires from football aged 34
Former Real Madrid striker Fernando Morientes has announced his retirement from football at the age of 34.
The forward had spent last season playing with reigning French champions Marseille but he was released by mutual consent at the start of the summer. The Spaniard’s decision brings to an end a 17-year spell in competitive football which saw him represent seven clubs in three different countries.
Morientes was capped 47 times by the Spanish national side and featured in the 1998 and 2002 World Cups, as well as the 2004 European Championships.
“After 17 years playing with the elite of football, I have had three months to rethink my future, and now I want to focus on my family,” said Morientes.
“I have rejected offers from teams around the world, including teams in Mexico, Qatar, Dubai, and also in recent days from Sporting Lisbon.”
Morientes joined Real Madrid in 1995 following short spells at Albacete and Real Zaragoza. He enjoyed eight productive years with Los Blancos, winning two league titles and three Champions League crowns.
The dismissal of former Real manager Vincent Del Bosque in 2003 led to a season-long loan at Monaco where his return to form helped the CÃƒÂ´te d’Azur side reach the 2004 Champions League final.
Morientes then moved to Liverpool in 2005 for £9.3 million, however the Spanish striker failed to settle in England and soon returned to Spain, this time joining Valencia.
Morientes made 573 career appearances and scored 204 goals in La Liga, Ligue 1 and the Premier League.