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France defender Sagnol retires from soccer

BAYERN Munich's French international Willi Sagnol declared yesterday that he has decided to retire from soccer after failing to recover from an Achilles tendon injury.

"Until recently, I traveled to find a specialist who would find a solution but I have to accept the obvious, my injury will not heal," said the defender while being interviewed by French cable television Canal Plus.

"Walking is painful, moving around a pitch is even more painful. The doctors tried everything. They made a decision. The only thing to do is to stop playing."

The 31-year-old full back, born in St Etienne, made 58 appearances for France and was a regular in the team that reached the final of the 2006 World Cup.

He won the French title with Monaco in 2000, the German title five times and the German Cup four times with Bayern which he joined in 2000.


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