Danny Collins signed for Sunderland for £140,000 under Mick McCarthy, a move which annoyed then Sheffield United manager Neil Warnock who hit out at the way Chester handled the transfer.
After five years at the North East club – which saw the Welsh International make 163 appearances, win the Championship twice and scoop two Fans' Player of the Year awards – Collins joined Stoke City for an initial fee of £2.75 million.
Spells with West Ham, Ipswich Town, Nottingham Forest, Rotherham United and Grimsby Town followed before the Chester-born centre-back decided to call it a day after leaving the Mariners this summer.
Collins, when asked if he was officially retired on The Roar Podcast, said: “I’d say so now, yeah. I didn’t say in the summer because I was weighing things up.”
And the former six-time England C international, who has settled in County Durham with his wife and young children, explained the reasons behind the decision and his plans for the future.
“I’ve been back up and down travelling to Grimsby the last three-years, staying down there three nights a week,” he said.
“My little boys are getting older, so they were getting a bit sick of me being away. I’m also looking at getting full-time into coaching work.”
Collins, who has worked as a co-commentator for the BBC on Sunderland games this season, concluded: “I enjoy a bit of media stuff as well. Different avenues, we’ll see where we go.”