Asamoah Gyan, Ghanaian football icon, has announced his retirement from the game at age 37.
Gyan whose missed penalty in the 2010 World Cup cost his country its place in history as the first African nation to reach the semi-finals, is Ghana’s all-time top scorer with 51 goals.
He called time on a career spanning over two decades at a press conference in Accra.
“I want to take this great opportunity, a stage that is difficult in every footballer’s career, a moment all footballers do not wish, but when nature dawns, that thin voice will keep echoing into the ears,” Gyan tweeted on Tuesday.
“It is time… that voice has been clear in my ears, and I have succumbed to it, it is time. It is time to hang up the jersey and boots in glory as I officially retire from active football.”
The former Ghana captain featured at the 2006 and 2010 World Cups and represented his country at seven Africa Cup of Nations tournaments, reaching the final on two occasions.
A pivotal member of the Ghana side that reached the 2010 World Cup quarter-finals, he missed the penalty in the last minute of extra time against Uruguay after Luis Suarez had been sent off for handling a goal-bound effort.
Ironically, Gyan converted his penalty in the shoot-out which Ghana lost 4-2.
“Baby Jet”, as he has been affectionately named, played for several European clubs including Sunderland in the Premier League, Udinese in Serie A as well as Rennes in Ligue 1.
Gyan is expected to remain in football as a television pundit, promoter and ambassador, according to AFP.
According to the Ghanaian Footballer, he intends to use his experience, knowledge in the field of coaching, football business and scouting to encourage and promote young talents.