Theo Walcott retires at 34


English striker Theo Walcott has announced his retirement from professional football at the age of 34, after an 18-year career and after playing more than 560 games for Southampton, Arsenal and Everton, scoring 129 goals.

“The first moment I put on my football boots at the age of 10 was the beginning of a special journey for me,” Walcott said in a statement posted on the Instagram social network.

In addition, he thanked his former teammates and the fans for the love they have offered him over the years. “The support you have shown me throughout this time has been incredible in every way imaginable and I am truly grateful. I have shared the football field with so many incredible players and we have created unforgettable memories,” he underlined.

Walcott was called up by the then England coach Sven-Goran Eriksson for the 2006 World Cup, but was unable to play any match in the event, but he still holds the record for being the youngest player in the country’s history to debut with the national team.

Walcott also became the youngest player to score a hat-trick for England – in a 4-1 win away to Croatia in September 2008 – aged 19, scoring eight goals in 47 caps.