'No longer worth it' - Former Sydney FC defender retires at 28

Jop van der Linden
The Dutch centre-back has hung up his boots after a recent stint in the A-League

At the age of 28, Jop van der Linden has confirmed his playing retirement having most recently appeared for A-League side Sydney FC.

Injuries and poor form saw the defender play just nine league matches for the Sky Blues last season following a career spent entirely in the Netherlands.

Van der Linden revealing a hip injury initially sustained in late 2015 has forced him to hang up the boots far earlier than he would have liked.

"At a certain point you are mainly busy keeping fit," van der Linden told VI.

"Every day you are busy maintaining your hips, getting going. That costs an incredible amount of energy. Your performance then also suffers. 

"You once started playing football because you enjoyed it so much. I came to a point that it hurt especially. Then you have to be honest with yourself. 

"I also want to be able to play football with my son one day. I could have gone on for a few more years, but what more could I have destroyed. This is no longer worth it."

Though van der Linden's foray to Australia would be the last of his playing career, the defender has no regrets about heading Down Under. 

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"A great experience that I would really recommend to anyone," he said. 

"It may not have turned into football what I had expected, but nobody will take the adventure away from me." 

While he didn't feature in the A-League grand final, van der Linden was watching on as Sydney FC beat Perth Glory on penalties last month.