When a 17-year-old midfielder began impressing in the midfield for Bayern Munich Frauen in the fall of 2010, the club realized they had struck gold. Lena Lotzen was going to be a star. Eight seasons later, Lotzen would leave Munich having only played 20 matches in a season once.
Now, after eleven seasons, Lotzen has decided that it’s time to hang up her boots for a finale time.
Announcing the decision on her Instagram on Thursday, Lotzen said, “I’ve tried everything to get back on the pitch, but the total number of injuries over the past few years make it impossible to play football at this level.”
“Lena was a really special type, a great person and an outstanding player. We had a great time together,” Bayern manager Karin Danner said. “We’re sorry that she has to end her career, but that might open new doors for her, too. And, we very much hope that she will remain in women’s football.”
During her time in Munich, Lotzen scored 33 goals out of the midfield in 91 matches for Bayern, with 15 of them coming in the 2012-13 season. She helped the club lift the Bundesliga Cup in 2011, the DFB Pokal in 2012, and the Bundesliga in 2015 and 2016.
On the international stage with Germany, Lotzen helped lead the team to the 2011 UEFA Women’s Under-19 Championship championship and a runners-up spot at the 2012 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup where she also won the Bronze Shoe as the third leading goalscorer. With the senior team, Lotzen started every single game when Germany won the 2013 UEFA Women’s Euro, and she featured in only a few matches at the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup after missing most of the year due to injury.
Despite having to retire early, Lotzen recognizes that she was luck in getting to do what she loved as her job.
“I look back on an unforgettable time that I would never want to miss. I was able to make my job what I love. I met an incredible number of great people, made many friends in football and experienced an incredible number of great moments.I am infinitely grateful for this time and thank all people who have accompanied and supported me on this path.”
Good luck in whatever the future holds, Lena!