Burns hangs up the boots

The changes continue at likely wooden spooners Perth Glory with long-term captain and former Socceroo Jacob Burns announcing his retirement on Friday afternoon.

The 35-year-old defensive midfielder will join Travis Dodd in exiting Glory at the end of the season, after the club confirmed the latter wouldn't be offered a new deal next season.

Burns has been a controversial figure during his four years at Perth, frustrating opposition sides and fans with his robust style, but winning over Glory supporters and claiming the 2011-12 Joe Marston Medal in the club's losing Grand Final.

Sydney-born Burns enjoyed a successful club career which included overseas stints with Leeds United, Barnsley, Wisla Krakow and Unirea Urziceni, having started his career with Sydney United and Parramatta Power in the National Soccer League.

The midfielder featured at Elland Road in their most successful period in the Premier League, making his debut against Charlton Athletic in a 3-1 win in October 2000 in front of 40,000 people.

He also played in the UEFA Champions League for Leeds that season, up against European powerhouse clubs, Real Madrid, Barcelona and AC Milan. In that same season he made his first full Socceroos appearance, in their 2-0 win against Scotland at Hampden Park.

"I remember that day well." Burns said. "It still is one of the most memorable and significant highlights of my career.

"To represent my home country, wearing the Green and Gold in front of the most influential people in my life, like my father, things just don't get any better.

"What makes the game even greater was that my family has some Scottish heritage, so the day was very special to me, and of course we won."

Burns went on to earn another 11 international caps for the Socceroos.

With one year left on his contract with Romanian club Unirea Urziceni, Burns decided it was time for him and his family to return to Australia after 10 successful seasons in Europe and in May 2009 he signed a three-year contract with Perth Glory and was immediately awarded the Club captaincy.

Leading the Club ever since and always playing with his heart on his sleeve, his robust midfield drive has been a major part of Perth Glory’s play over the past four years.

One of Burns' most memorable achievements at Perth Glory was when Glory reached the 2011-12 Hyundai A-League Grand Final against Brisbane Roar.

It was a dream run to the final with Burns’ leadership shining through, with the skipper holding his nerve and converting the winning penalty in the shoot-out win against Central Coast Mariners in the semi-final away to earn a place in the Grand Final.

"It was an incredible experience," Burns reminisced.

"The Hyundai A-League is like no other in the world, earlier in that season no one gave us a hope to get to the Grand Final, but the Perth Glory supporters and ourselves, believed in the Club and magic was made."

The Grand Final result may have been a disappointment for the Club, but Burns’ performance was superb and he was awarded the Joe Marston Medal as best on field in a losing side, which shows what this Club means to the feisty midfielder.

"It was a very special moment for me, something that doesn't come around too often," Burns said.

"To be honoured in such a way by receiving an individual accolade, is something that I share with my fellow team mates and our loyal supporters. In an ideal world it would have been fantastic to have lifted the cup together with them all that day."

Burns has played 114 games for Perth Glory over the past four years, and has led by example, both on and off the field.