One-time Australia and Melbourne Victory defender Matthew Kemp has announced his retirement from A-League football, effective immediately
Kemp will return home to Adelaide with his family and insists injuries did not influence his decision.
"I could have continued playing, but my decision was more based on the future. I felt it was time to look ahead, re-train in areas that will provide future professional opportunities and most importantly, give me a chance to spend more time with my family," said the 2009/10 Melbourne Victory Clubman of Year.
After joining Victory in 2007 from rivals Adelaide United, Kemp made 79 appearances and played in the 2008/09 Premiership/Championship-winning team.
The 31-year-old's form also earned him an international cap against Kuwait during the Socceroos 2010 AFC Asian Cup qualifiers.
Victory's exhibition match against Greek champions Olympiacos on Saturday turned out to be his final game for the club and he departs with life-long memories.
"You make a lot of sacrifices to be a professional footballer, and there comes a time when you have to look at the next stage of your life," Kemp said.
"I've had a great time in Melbourne, winning the double in 2008/09 was a highlight and I played for the Socceroos too, so it was a great time in my career. I'd like to thank the club for those opportunities and wish them all the best in the future."
Victory Managing Director Richard Wilson thanked Kemp for his services and wished him best for the future.
"Matthew made a significant contribution to our football club and was a key part of our success from 2008 to 2010," said Wilson.
"We thank Kempy for what he has brought to our club and wish him and his family all the very best for the next phase of their lives."