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Owen announces retirement

19 March 2013 11:13

Stoke City striker Michael Owen has announced he will end his playing career at the end of the season.

The former England striker has struggled to make an impact for Tony Pulis' side in the Premier League this season scoring just the one goal during a handful of first-team appearances.

The 32-year-old joined Stoke City on a one-year deal after leaving Manchester United last year and has revelaed he will be hanging up his boots once his current deal expires.

"It is with an immense amount of pride that I am announcing my intention to retire from professional football at the end of this season," he wrote in a statement on his official website.

"I have been very fortunate in that my career has taken me on a journey I could only have dreamed of."

An 18-year-old Owen burst on to the world stage with a memorable goal for England against Argentina at the 1998 World Cup in France.

Since then he has gone on to win the Premier League, the FA Cup, three League Cups and the UEFA Cup.

The Stoke striker is also the last Englishman to win the European Footballer of the Year award in 2001, when he became the first England player since Kevin Keegan to win the prestigious accolade.

Owen is England's fourth-highest goalscorer of all time and has 220 goals in his club career, during spells at Liverpool, Newcastle and Manchester United and Real Madrid.

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