La Liga legend announces retirement at age of 41

Real Betis and La Liga legend Joaquin has announced he will retire from professional football at the end of the 2022/23 season.

The Spanish forward’s exit comes at the age of 41 and after 23 seasons. He holds the record for most appearances for Betis with 521 and is only seven off the all-time La Liga record held by Andoni Zubizarreta (622).

Betis revealed the news on Wednesday night with a video on social media, with Joaquin himself saying ‘not everything is forever’ and ‘now it just remains for me to hang up my boots, my art. A window into eternity.’

Joaquin won the Copa del Rey three times during his career – twice with Betis and another with Valencia, the team he joined in 2006 for €25m. He would play Champions League football there as well as with Malaga, who enjoyed a memorable run to the quarter finals in 2012/13.

He would spend two seasons in Italy with Fiorentina, being a Coppa Italia runner-up in 2013/14, before heading back to boyhood club Betis for a second stint.

Joaquin has made over 900 appearances in all competitions throughout his club career but missed out on Spain’s golden era at the start of the 2010s. The winger criticised manager Luis Aragones after a Euro 2008 qualifier defeat to Northern Ireland and was never selected for La Roja again.

Spain would win Euro 2008 and Euro 2012 alongside the 2010 World Cup with Joaquin absent. He made 51 appearances for the national team in total, scoring four goals, and played at two World Cups and Euro 2004.


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