The legendary Rivaldo retires from professional football
Barcelona and Brazil legend Rivaldo announced his retirement yesterday afternoon.
The 2002 World Cup winner and 1999 FIFA World Player of the Year is regarded as one of the all time Seleção greats and explained with a message on his Instagram website his plans to hang up his boots.
Press Association quoted the 41-year-old who said: “With tears in my eyes today I would like first to than God, my family and all the support, the affection that I received during those 24 years as a player.
“Today I communicate to all my fans in the world, my history as a player came to the end. Just I have to thank the lovely career I have built over these years.”
Rivaldo has played for 14 clubs in his career including the likes of Barcelona, AC Milan, Olympiacos, Corinthians and Palmeiras.
One of the playmaker’s last wishes was to play a professional match with his son and that was achieved recently with Mogi Mirim, where Rivaldo is president.
He scored 34 times for Brazil and Eurosport Asia quoted Rivaldo: "There were many obstacles, challenges, waivers, longings, disappointments, but were much greater joys, achievements, growth, change.
"Sometimes teaching, other learning, but never lost my focus - always with dedication, determination and direction of God.
"In this long journey, many people passed through my life - some for a period, other friends who remain until now. I built my career upon a miracle - leaving Paulista, with no financial resources, the well wishes of only my family, discredited by doctors and trainers - and seeing a distant dream come true.
"With persistence, dedication and especially with the hand of God, I came to be recognised as the best player in the world, a world champion, among many other important titles in the history of football.
"Among trophies, medals, awards and titles, in a land where everything is consumed, here I leave a story, perhaps an example, but surely a testimony that is worth believing and fighting."