Injured Chivu retires after leaving Inter Milan

Cristian Chivu has announced his retirement after his contract at Inter was cancelled by mutual consent.

The versatile former Romania international's career has been hampered by a foot injury in recent seasons and he has not featured for the Milan club in 2013-14. 

Inter revealed on Monday that Chivu had agreed a deal to end his long, successful spell with the club after recently undergoing another operation, and the defender announced his retirement on his Facebook page shortly afterwards.

After taking time to thank the medical staff that have taken care of him throughout his injury problems, the 33-year-old said his retirement signalled "the end of a journey".

"I have entered the football world as a child, a dreamer with a lot of ambition," he said.

"I leave it with a few grey hairs, many scars and the conviction that my heart is where it belongs, even if I have always gave it to the teams I played with.

"Dad, I hope you are proud of the man I have become. This is the end of a journey... and the beginning of the rest of my life!!!"

Chivu moved to San Siro from Roma in July 2007 and went on to win three Serie A titles, the Coppa Italia twice and the UEFA Champions League with Inter as well as the FIFA Club World Cup.

A statement on Inter's website said: "Inter and Cristian Chivu shared a relationship that went well beyond the pitch and pure professionalism.

"The club wishes to thank Cristian for his great strength, loyalty and the key role he played in his years that will always be remembered as among some of the most glorious in Inter's history.

"FC Internazionale wishes to send a warm thanks to the player, as well as his wonderful family, for all he has done for the club."