BREAKING: Gerard Pique set for abrupt retirement, to play final game on Saturday

Gerard Pique has announced his retirement from football, with his final game to come when Barcelona host Almeria at the Camp Nou on Saturday.

The 35-year-old centre-back explained in an emotional video released on Thursday evening that he’d be abruptly hanging up his boots to bring to end his glittering career. Pique had been included on Spain’s provisional 55-man squad list for the World Cup in Qatar, making his retirement even more of a surprise.

Formerly of Manchester United, the Catalan-born defender enjoyed a prestigious 18-year playing career, in which he lifted a whopping 35 trophies and played under some of football’s greatest ever managers. Pique also won league titles in England and Spain, four Champions Leagues, a World Cup and a European Championship across almost 800 senior appearances.

Regarded as one of the best centre-backs of his generation, Pique will wave goodbye to his beloved Barcelona this weekend – but he says that he’ll be back. “I have always said that after Barca there would be no other team and that is how it will be. This Saturday will be my last game at the Camp Nou,” the veteran explained in his two-minute 15-second farewell video on social media.

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