With an injury plagued career, Ledley King has called it a day, aged 31.
King, who has been at the club since he was 14, made over 300 appearances for the club and captained the club to League Cup final in 2008 where they beat Chelsea 2-1 also being capped by England 21 times with his debut coming in 2002 against Italy.
Like his club career his international career could have been so much more with many feeling that Ledley King would have been revered as one of England’s best defenders in recent time if he had been free of his injuries. The fact he had been able to put in so many great performances over the years whist still dealing with his knee injuries, amoung others, is a great testament to his ability and mentalilty.
Although King might not be playing at White Hart Lane anymore, that doesn’t mean that his face won’t be seen at the club as he will be employed by Tottenham in an ambassadorial role where he will “support the Club’s work in the community” as well as working with “the ongoing regeneration of the Tottenham area whilst also being a hugely positive role model for our younger players”
King staying with the club in any kind of role will come as no surprise to Spurs fans as his love for the is well known. It is a rarity in modern football for someone to be a real one man club, but there was never another club for Ledley.
“I have been here since I was a boy, I have always considered it my Club and have always found it hard to imagine wearing the shirt of another team,” adding “I know that being a one-club man is a rarity these days, but I have always enjoyed being part of the set-up here and the challenge of putting this Club up with the elite where it should be.
King also went to Thank the club and the supporters for all their support “I would like to say thank you to everyone at the Club and to the fans. I have missed a lot of football over the years, but the Spurs fans have always been patient and incredibly supportive with me during difficult periods. Sadly my injuries and inability to train have now finally brought an end to my career.”
And on his role as ambassador for the club – “I have been in Tottenham for around 17 years, having started at Spurs when I was 14. It is a second home for me and I pleased that I can continue to work within the Club and for the local community, especially after the devastation caused by the riots last year. I am already heavily involved with the work of Spurs Foundation and the new stadium scheme will be a major factor in the regeneration of the area, so I am delighted that I shall be part of that.”
A testimonial will be held later in the season Chairman, Daniel Levy said on the future testimonial, “It will undoubtedly be a special night at the Lane, the chance for fans and teammates to pay tribute to our longest-serving, not to mention one of the most gifted players in the history of the Club.”
Players, Former players and celebrites a like on hearing the news expressed their views via twitterGary Lineker @GaryLineker: I see Ledley King has announced his retirement from football. A truly wonderful player and credit to his sport. Wish him well. #spurslegend Rio Ferdinand @rioferdy5: Sorry to see Ledley King retiring from football, top player. Hope he passes on some of his football skills/knowledge to the next generation. Lethal Bizzle @LethalBizzle: Even as a #Gooner I rate Ledley King’s desire & determination to carry on playing through injury. Says a lot about his character. #Soldier Darren Bent @DarrenBent: Sad to see Ledley King has been forced to retire. A truly great player, working with him has made me a better player. Wish him all the best! Piers Morgan @piersmorgan: Best compliment I can pay Ledley King is that I’m bloody glad he’s retiring.
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