Former Liverpool Brazilian midfielder Lucas Leiva on Friday announced his retirement from football after being diagnosed with a heart problem back in December.
Lucas, 36, spent left Liverpool for the Serie A where he spent five years with Lazio before leaving on a free transfer last summer to join his first professional club Gremio.
He made 17 appearances for the team during his second spell before a heart issue was discovered during a round of routine tests back in December.
Speaking in a press conference on Friday, an emotional Lucas confirmed his decision to retire after the diagnosis.
“I want to thank Gremio for all the support they have given me in these three months. Today I am announcing my retirement. It has been a difficult period and I think this is the first time you have seen me cry.
“I am ending where I wanted to end, but not the way I wanted to end. I am sure that now a new chapter will open. I hoped the situation would improve, but it didn’t. My health comes first.”
Lucas Leiva was a fan favourite at both Liverpool and Lazio,
During his time in Italy, he made 198 appearances across all competitions for Lazio, helping them win two Coppa Italia titles and one Supercoppa Italiana.
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