Barcelona defender Gerard Pique announces retirement

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Barcelona defender Gerard Pique, a three-time Champions League winner with the Spanish club, has announced his retirement at age 35.

Pique said in a video posted on his Twitter account Thursday that “this Saturday will be my last game at Camp Nou.”

“It is the moment to end this stage of my life,” Pique said. “I always said that after Barcelona there will be no other club, and that is the way it is going to be.”

Pique has played 615 games for Barcelona, scoring 52 goals. In addition to the treble of European Cups, he helped Barcelona win eight Spanish league titles and seven Copa del Rey crowns among other titles.

As a former Spain player, he helped his country win the 2010 World Cup and the 2012 European Championship.

But after being a set starter for most of his career, Pique lost his starting job this season after Barcelona brought in new players at his position of center back.

Barcelona hosts Almería on Saturday.

Pique's retirement comes after he split up with pop star Shakira, the mother of his two children, this summer.


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The Associated Press