Achilles injury forces Sagnol into retirement

February 1, 2009

France and Bayern Munich defender Willi Sagnol confirmed on Sunday that he was ending his playing career after failing to recover from an Achilles tendon injury.

"Until recently, I travelled to find a specialist who would find a solution but I have to accept the obvious, my injury will not heal," he told 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 made 58 appearances for France and was a regular in the team that reached the final of the 2006 World Cup.

Born and soccer-educated in St Etienne, he won the French title with Monaco in 2000, the German title five times and the German Cup four times with Bayern whom he joined in 2000.