Boca Juniors' Martin Palermo: Physical problems hastened my retirement

'El Titan' played his last ever game for Boca at the weekend, and affirmed that discomfort caused by a bad knee was a key factor in his decision to quit at 37
Boca Juniors legend Martin Palermo has explained why he chose to end his football career at the end of the Clausura season, and revealed that a knee problem hastened his decision to retire.

The 37-year-old forward played his final professional game at the weekend against Gimnasia, and predictably went out with a bang when he set up Cristian Cellay for a last-minute equaliser in a 2-2 draw. The previous week he was given a standing ovation in the Bombonera, and even gifted one of the goals in respect to a glittering spell in the Boca shirt.

Speaking on Tuesday, 'El Titan' finally revealed why he had decided to call it a day in 2011; blaming an injury to the knee which was causing him great strain.

"Liquid was appearing on it. I had to have it drained every week, it was very hard to train and I was not enjoying myself," he told Radio La Red, and added that this was the first time he had suffered such a complaint in his career.

Moving on, Palermo talked about the relationship he enjoyed with fellow Boca favourite Juan Roman Riquelme. The pair formed a formidable double-act on the pitch, but for some years have not been talking to each other off it; something Martin confirmed in the interview.

"[Our relationship] was a 'good morning', a 'goodbye' and that is as much as we talked," he confessed, before adding that this was not always the case.

"I never knew why things changed, neither of us wanted to talk about it. I hope my exit hopes to decrease the tension, many things may change and this bad feeling won't be felt inside the dressing room."

The striker retires as Boca's highest-ever goalscorer, and with 227 Primera Division goals is tied for fifth place in the list of Argentine football's most prolific marksmen.

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