Former Liverpool and England star Stewart Downing confirms he’ll ‘probably retire’ after leaving Blackburn

Stewart Downing has told talkSPORT he is likely to retire from football.

The former Liverpool and England midfielder has made 725 club appearances during a 20-year career, which includes spells with West Ham, Middlesbrough, Sunderland, Aston Villa and most recently Blackburn.

Downing has enjoyed a long and successful career, which started in 2001
Downing appeared for England at the 2006 World Cup

And the 36-year-old has admitted he will ‘probably’ hang up his boots when his Rovers deal expires next month.

Downing, who won 35 caps for England, told Tuesday’s talkSPORT Breakfast: “The likelihood is I’ll probably retire.

“My contract has ended at Blackburn. I had a good few years there, I wasn’t involved as much last season.

“I re-signed in November, so I was getting up to speed and by the time I did, the season had petered out.

“After last season because I wasn’t involved in the first three or four months, I tried to get my head around if this could be it.

“But I went back to Blackburn for another six or seven months and then I thought, ‘I feel good, I feel fit’.

Downing found his first-team opportunities limited at Blackburn in the 2020/21 campaign

“There comes a time when you have to make a decision. You’ve got to get enjoyment from football and if you’re not playing, that’s a big thing for me.

“I wasn’t involved as much as I would have liked last season.

“If that’s the way it’s going to be going forward, I’ll look at something new and call it a day because it’s about playing and being involved on the Saturday after training all week.

“I was disappointed when I didn’t play last season, which is life, you get on with it. I’ve got a decision to make in the next couple of weeks, but I’ll probably retire.”