Every year a number of professional football players retire from one of the greatest sports in the world and recently we have seen many legends retire like Ryan Giggs and the Neville brothers. To football fans that have grown up with such players it must be a real tragedy to see their heroes walk away from their stadium and hang up their boots forever. In 2013 we saw an especially long list of legends bringing the curtain down on their careers. So, let’s see the five recent football retirees and what they are doing now.


Gary Neville

Gary retired from football in 2011 after playing his entire career for Manchester United. He appeared 400 times for the Red Devils, scoring five goals. He made his international debut for England in 1995 after just 3 years of professional football and went on to appear 84 times more. Gary Neville is one of the best and most capped right backs that have played for England, and currently he is the coach of the English national team. He is also a co-owner of Salford City and is a respected pundit and commentator for Sky Sports.


Ryan Giggs

Ryan Giggs is the longest serving Manchester United player, and is currently the most decorated player in British football. He started out in the youth team of Manchester City in 1985, but after two years he switched to Manchester United where he became a legend. Currently, Giggs is the co-owner of Salford City together with Gary Neville and the assistant manager of Manchester United. He is also a financial backer, along with Gary and Phil Neville, Paul Scholes and Nicky Butt, of the 133-room establishment called Hotel Football in Manchester next to Old Trafford that opened just recently.


Alessandro Nesta

Alessandro Nesta, one of the best centre-backs of his era, is a product of Lazio’s youth school and an Italian football legend. He played 9 years for Lazio, continued to play for Milan 10 years more only to end up in Montreal playing one season for the Montreal Impact, after which he retired. The stylish defender has many trophies to his name; among them the 2006 World Cup title with Italy.

In 2014 he came out of retirement to appear 3 times for Indian Super League team Chennaiyin under head coach and Italian colleague Marco Materazzi after which he decided to retire (again) the same month. He recently expressed a desire to coach a club from the MLS as soon as he gets his coaching licence and everybody expects him to be the next coach of Montreal. Bad news for fand of attacking football is that he thinks that teams should defend with all 11 players; the dreaded Italian “catenaccio” system.


Gennaro Gattuso

Gennaro was one of the fiercest and most hard working players in football. He has one of the highest work rates on the field and is known for his explosive temperament due to which he received many yellow and red cards. He wasn’t blessed with notable technical ability, but despite that he will be remembered as one of the best defensive midfielders in recent times.

After he left Milan, where he played for 13 years and made his fame, he continued on to play for the Swiss club Sion in 2012, and in February 2013 he was named manager of Sion. His first managerial spell ended after just 3 months, and in May the same year he was sacked. After he left Sion he stopped playing football professionally and focused on his coaching. Then he went on as a coach of Palermo in June 2013 and was sacked in September after achieving only two wins in six games in Serie B. He continued as the head coach of OFI Crete where he had little success. On top of that he had troubles motivating the players to play due to the club’s financial problems, which was a direct result of Grecce’s economic crisis. Currently he is free from coaching duties. He applied for the Hamilton Academical coaching position in January 2015, but was turned down – possibly because of his temperament and tendency to conflict with his players.


Dietmar Hamman

Liverpool’s legendary German midfielder Hamman is best known for his Premier League career that spanned 11 years. He started out as a player for Bayern Munich, where he played 5 years professionally, but he spent the remainder of his career in England playing for Newcastle, Liverpool, Manchester City and even Milton Keynes Dons in the 2010/2011 season as a player/coach after which he retired from professional football and remained as the head coach till end of the season. From there on he went to be the Leicester City first team coach in February 2011 alongside Sven-Goran Eriksson. In July 2011 he was appointed as the head coach of Stockport County, but in November he resigned after a devastating season. Currently he is a media pundit.

Although the former German international will be remembered for his playing career, he will also be remembered for his gambling addiction. He was a compulsive gambler that frittered his money away on all forms of sports betting (learn about responsible gambling). He is famous for making a £300,000 cricket bet in a single day. He was part of Liverpool’s 2005 Champions League team.