Borussia Mönchengladbach's veteran centre-back Martin Stranzl has announced he will hang up his boots at the end of the season after five-and-a-half years at BORUSSIA-PARK.
Stranzl has played 116 Bundesliga games for the Foals since signing from FC Spartak Moskva in late 2010, but thigh and knee complaints this term have rendered the former Austria international available for only 71 Bundesliga minutes. Out of contract in the summer, the 35-year-old has now decided to end his career, tearfully revealing the news at a press conference on Tuesday.
“In the last few seasons, the situation was such that I’d always signed a contract for another year. Unfortunately, this year will be when I hang up my boots. It’s obviously not been an easy decision. A long and happy time is coming to an end. I’d like to say a special thank-you to [sporting director] Max [Eberl] for the great work we’ve done together and his support in the last few years. And even though it may not look like it now, I’m looking forward to what will come next: to spending time with the family. But as you can see, it [the decision] has been very, very tough.”
Capped 56 times by his country, Stranzl also played for TSV 1860 Munich and VfB Stuttgart before his four-year spell in Russia, and was a key member of the Gladbach team that secured UEFA Champions League football last season. The captain is held in high regard by the club's management.
"Martin Stranzl definitely has a future at Borussia Mönchengladbach," said Eberl. "Where and in what role, we will see."