Former England and Arsenal winger Theo Walcott has announced his retirement from professional football.
The 34-year-old played for Arsenal, Everton, and Southampton in the English Premiership and also represented the England national team. The pacy forward hangs up his boots at the age of 34, having made 397 Premier League appearances.
Walcott started his career with Southampton in the Championship during the 2005/06 season, before joining Arsenal in January 2006 as a 16-year-old where he’ll go on to become a club legend. In the 11 years he spent with the London giants, Walcott scored 105 goals in 397 appearances for the Gunners.
In 2012/13 he scored 14 goals and produced 10 assists in 32 League matches, his best-ever season, as Arsenal finished fourth.
WALCOTT RETIRES FROM FOOTBALL AFTER 18 YEARS
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“The first moment I put my football boots on aged 10, was the start of a special journey for me,” Walcott said on Instagram.
“The support shown to me throughout this time, has been incredible in every way imaginable and I am truly grateful.
“I would like to say a big thank you to all the managers and coaches I’ve worked with, especially Harry for giving me the start and Arsene [Wenger] for showing belief and support to me when I joined the club at only 16 years old,” Walcott said.
“Over 18 fantastic years in the Premier League there are so many moments I will cherish.
Walcott retires from football.
THEO RETIRES AFTER 17 YEARS PLAYING IN THE EPL
“The early days at Southampton football club, my transfer to Arsenal where I spent 12 enjoyable years and scored over 100 goals. Winning the FA Cup and scoring in the final which is every kids dream.
“To have had the opportunity to represent England 47 times, going to the World Cup in 2006, aged just 17, and still to hold the record for the youngest ever debut by a senior England player and youngest hat trick goalscorer at 19 – I will never forget that feeling,” said Walcott.