Jose Enrique reveals why he's had to retire – aged just 31 – with a 'heavy heart'

Jose Enrique
Jose Enrique

Jose Enrique has announced his retirement from football.

The former Newcastle United and Liverpool defender spent last season at Real Zaragoza.

However, Enrique, 31, has called time on his career because of a long-term knee problem.

READ MORE: Miles Starforth: Does Liverpool outcast Jose Enrique regret quitting Newcastle?

Enrique posted an emotional message on Instagram.

"It comes with a very heavy heart today to announce my retirement from professional football," said Enrique.

"It's been a very hard decision to take and accept. I would of loved to have played more years at my best level if my body would of let me but all good things have to come to an end and more in football.

"I just want to say a huge thanks to all of the fans and clubs who have supported me throughout my career. You have been the best!

"I have been blessed to play for some of the best teams in the world, with some of the best players in the world. these memories will stay with me forever. ❤️⚽️ #thankyou."

Replying to best wishes message from Newcastle's official account on Twitter, Enrique said: "Thanks a lot. (Has) been a pleasure to play for this amazing club with this amazing fans. I have great memories I will never forget. All the best."

Jose Enrique

Jose Enrique

Speaking to Marca about his injury problems, Enrique added: “It was supposed to be for three months and it turned into two years.

"I saw five doctors in England, but they didn’t find the problem. It hurts me, but so many times they told me that it was a psychological problem that I came to believe it.”

Enrique joined Newcastle from Valencia in 2007.

The Spain Under-21 international went on to establish himself as the club's first-choice left-back.

In 2011 Enrique joined Liverpool in a £7million deal shortly after a Twitter meltdown.

Enrique let rip at Newcastle's transfer policy under owner Mike Ashley – his views still have echoes today – while on the club's US tour.

"The club is allowing all the major players of the team to go," tweeted Enrique.

"Seriously, do you think it is the fault of the players? Andy (Carroll), nobby (Kevin Nolan) etc etc.

"This club will never again fight to be among the top 6 again with this policy."

Enrique added: "I think you fans are the best and you deserve the best, not what they are doing with the club. Thanks to everyone for supporting me."

United, without Enrique, went on to finish fifth in the Premier League that season.