André Schürrle has called it quits at just age 29, after cancelling his contract with Borussia Dortmund on Wednesday, one year early, and confirming his retirement on Instagram.
The former Chelsea fan favorite — has any non-Chelsea Academy player ever been as giddy to play for Chelsea as the man from Ludwigshafen, who would go on to score one of the greatest goals in Chelsea history, just a month after setting up the winning goal for Germany in the 2014 World Cup final? — opened up on his decision in a subsequent interview with Der Spiegel.
His quotes, in an article titled “I do not need the applause anymore”, make for a harrowing, saddening, even concerning read.
“This decision has been growing in me for a long time.
“The depths became deeper and the highlights less and less. [In football], you always have to play a certain role in order to survive in the business, otherwise you will lose your job and you will not get a new one.”
-André Schürrle; source: Der Spiegel excerpt via Google Translate
A decade in senior professional football has left Schürrle “rich but lonely”, often many miles away from his young family, such as this season, which he spent on loan at Spartak Moscow.
Also, this from a few months ago too. Lockdown will have given hundreds of players like Schürrle a lot of time to think about jacking football in, and goodness knows football gives them enough reason to do so. https://t.co/qTbeAf1GC5— Rob Brown (@robbro7) July 17, 2020
Know that you are loved, André Schürrle, if you ever happen upon this article, even by those who have only known you as a footballer for a little over 18 months (65 appearances, 14 goals) at Stamford Bridge.
“Now I’m ready and open for all the beautiful possibilities that are coming towards me,” Schürrle says in closing on his Instagram post.
And we wish him all the beautiful things indeed.
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Hallo zusammen, Ich möchte euch mitteilen, dass ich meine aktive Karriere beende! Im Namen von mir und meiner Familie will ich danke sagen, an alle, die ein Teil dieser phenomenalen Jahre waren! Eure Unterstützung hat das alles möglich gemacht!! Ich freue mich auf neue Herausforderungen und kann es kaum erwarten dieses neue Kapitel zu beginnen Euer André Hi all, I want to let you know that I’m stepping away from playing professional football !! On behalf of myself and my family I want to thank everybody who was a part of these phenomenal years! The support and love you shared with me was unbelievable and more I could have ever asked for! Now I’m ready and open for all the beautiful possibilities that are coming towards me André