29-year-old Watford midfielder Damien Francis has had to announce his retirement from professional football after failing to fully recover from a knee injury sustained in a 1-1 draw with Manchester City in April 2007.
Francis, who was born in Wandsworth England, won one international cap for Jamaica in 2003. The midfielder rose through the youth ranks at Wimbledon and went on to make just under 100 appearances for the club.
In 2003 he moved to Norwich City and spent two seasons with the Canaries before joining Wigan Athletic. A year later, Francis was snapped up by Aidy Boothroyd to help Watford in their Premier League campaign.
Francis announced his decision to retire yesterday on the Hornets' official website, stating: "I'm devastated to have to accept the decision to announce my retirement."
He continued: "I have been strongly advised by my surgeon that I cannot continue to put my knee through such trauma."
"I can't thank Watford FC enough
for their support, the medical staff especially have bent over
backwards to help me to try and return to fitness, I truly appreciate
all of their efforts."
"I want to thank the manager, players and the whole club too. I
would also like to thank all the fans from my Wimbledon, Norwich and
Wigan days for their support, and a special thanks to the Watford fans
for their patience."
Francis added: "I wish the club all the best for the future."
Ricky Brooks, Goal.com