Arsenal striker and England legend Jodie Taylor has announced her retirement from football.
The 37-year-old brings down the curtain on a career that has spanned over 20 years, having won the Champions League with Lyon in 2019/20 and the FA Cup with Birmingham in 2012.
But Taylor will perhaps be best remembered as a key part of the trailblazing group of England players who won bronze at the 2015 World Cup. She went on to win the Golden Boot at Euro 2017.
Taylor told Sky Sports News: “I signed for the second half of the season with Arsenal earlier this year and even before I got on the flight back to the UK, I knew I would be finishing my career with Arsenal.
“It’s been brewing and I’m finally ready to officially announce that I’m stepping away from playing. It feels really weird saying it out loud. I’ve had a lot of discussions with friends, family and loved ones regarding it.
“It’s difficult stepping away from something that has been your passion, love and all you’ve ever known but I am at peace with where I’m at. I’m stepping away still fit and healthy with it being on my terms and in my control which is really important for me. Not everybody has the privilege to walk away from the game on their terms.
“It’s a little sad, emotional but I’m excited for what’s next. I’m certainly going to be staying in the game albeit not kicking around a ball on the field.
“The last few years I’ve been thinking about what’s next. I’ve been completing my coaching licenses. I finished my UEFA A licence earlier this year and I’m also completing a Masters in Sports Directorship. Whether it’s coaching or more of an executive role I know I’ll definitely be in the game because I love it so much and it is my passion.”
Taylor was part of the England squad that won the SheBelieves Cup in 2019, and featured for then-manager Phil Neville at the World Cup in France that same year.
The striker finishes her career with 51 England caps and 19 goals, and is 187 in the FA’s legacy numbers scheme, which honours past and present Lionesses.
“At club level, winning the Champions League with Lyon was a career highlight,” said Taylor. “Wearing the national team’s shirt and getting that opportunity, I didn’t get my first cap for England until I was 28 years old so it was a lot of blood, sweat and tears to get to that point. That was a really proud moment for me.
“The 2015 World Cup when we won a bronze medal was a huge moment in women’s football and football in England. It was great to be a part of that and to contribute. I’ve been really fortunate in the experiences I’ve had, things that I’ve won and the people I’ve met. I’m really happy with where my career has been and at peace now stepping into an off-pitch role.”
Taylor played for a number of clubs throughout her career, starting at Tranmere Rovers before playing college football for the Oregon State Beavers.
She went on to play for a multiple teams in the USA – including a recent spell with her former England team-mate Casey Stoney at San Diego Wave – Canada and Australia, as well as in Europe.
Taylor enjoyed two spells with with Arsenal, the most recent seeing her re-join the club in March, having also played for the Gunners between 2016 and 2017.
Her retirement comes ahead of the new WSL season, which begins this Sunday October 1.
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