Javier Zanetti has announced that he is joining Antonio Di Natale on the list of retiring Serie A legends. The 40-year-old Inter Milan captain, who has made over 600 appearances since joining the nerazzurri from Argentine side Banfield back in 1995, explained his decision in Argentine newspaper La Nación:
"I felt it was time. Because football gave me a lot and I enjoyed it all. After my injury I wanted to prove I could return to being competitive. And I did. I feel complete and fulfilled. Retiring near the age of 41 is priceless."
The news had been confirmed by Inter president Erick Thohir last week, though this is the first time Zanetti has made it officially official. He'll become a sporting director at the Milanese club, at which he has enjoyed enormous success over the last two decades.
He retires having won Serie A five times, the Coppa Italia four times, and a Champions League, a UEFA Cup and a Club World Cup, among a host of other team and individual honours.