Bayern Munich captain Philipp Lahm has announced that he will retire as a player at the end of the current season.
Lahm, 33, also captained Germany to their 2014 World Cup victory; he retired from international activities after their final victory in Brazil at 113 caps for Die Mannschaft.
“I’m going to stop playing football at the end of the season,” the FC Bayern youth product confirmed following his team’s 1-0 victory over VfL Wolfsburg in Tuesday evening’s DFB Cup Round of 16 tie. It was the defender’s 501st appearance for the Bundesliga champions.
However, the announcement meant that Lahm will stop playing despite having a contract scheduled to expire on 30 June 2018.
“More than a year ago I started checking and questioning myself from day to day and week to week. I’m certain I’ll maintain peak form through to the end of the season. I can manage that until the end of the campaign, but not beyond it.”
With regard to a potential future in the FC Bayern management team, Lahm stated: “There were talks, and in the end I decided it’s not the right time for me to take up a new position at FC Bayern.”
Lahm had made his senior debut for Bayern in 2002, winning seven Bundesliga seasons, 6 DFB Cup trophies as well as one Champions League title alongside the team since then.