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Chicago Fire's ex-Hertha defender Friedrich announces retirement

Chicago Fire defender Arne Friedrich has announced his retirement from professional football.

The 34-year old German has been forced to make the decision because of ongoing injuries and bows out of the game after 14 years as a pro.

"This was a very difficult decision," said Friedrich.

"After discussing it with the medical staff and my family, I've decided that it is the right time for me to retire from professional soccer.

"I was very excited to re-sign with the Fire following the 2012 season but unfortunately my injuries prevent me from returning to the game that I love. I have been truly blessed to represent my country at the highest level and play for world-class clubs. I would like to thank all of my teammates, coaches, the fans and my family for supporting me throughout my career."

Friedrich started his career in 1999 with SC Verl before moving to Arminia Bielefeld the following year. He shifted to Hertha Berlin in 2002, where he spent around eight years, prior to his 2010 move to VfL Wolfsburg and then onto the fire in 2012.

Friedrich, who made 23 appearances for the Fire, was a part of the Germany squads for the 2006 and 2010 World Cups and played a total of 82 times for Die Mannschaft.

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Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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