The official announcement has come and Willy Sagnol has retired.
"That’s the end. The pain is too great for me to continue playing. It’s something I have to accept. I’m devastated and it’s hard to take. I’d always dreamed it would end differently, and I’d have liked to keep playing for at least another few years. I’ve tried everything in recent weeks, but the doctors are unanimous: I can’t go on."
Sagnol is just 31 years old and has been with Bayern for eight and a half seasons. In that time, he has assembled an impressive collection of medals and victories. Among them are World Club Cup, Champions League, five Bundesliga titles, four DFB Cup triumphs, and the DFL League Cup three times.
Willy will be missed by fans, team mates and administration. He was a great player for Bayern and it is a sad time for him and the fans that have followed him so closely. Willy and his family will stay in Munich for awhile before relocating to the south of France where he hopes to find a job managing a team. I don't think that will be so hard for him. Bayern hope to give him a send off in May with a huge celebration of another championship as well.
And what does Willy think about the whole thing? Well, his heart belongs to Munich.
"I’ve had close on nine wonderful years at Bayern, and a very special relationship with the fans. I’ll definitely be at the Allianz Arena a couple more times in the coming months. The Säbener Strasse was home to me. I’m leaving now, but my heart’s still here."