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7:45 PM UTC
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By ESPN Staff

PSG legend Pauleta hangs up his boots

Former Paris St Germain star Pauleta has announced his retirement at the age of 35.

Pauleta, Portugal and PSG's all-time leading goalscorer, has been out of contract since the summer. The striker, who scored 109 goals for the capital club, announced at the end of last season that he was set to call it a day but appeared to go back on his decision.

However, although he claims to have received interesting offers at home and abroad, Pauleta has now decided his initial decision was the right one.

"I decided to retire," he told French daily Le Parisien. "I took this decision at the end of last season at the end of my contract with PSG. "I feel it's the right time even if it's not easy.

"As I said before, it's becoming tricky for me with my repeated absences and the distance from those close to me.

"I've had interesting offers from Europe, the Persian gulf and the United States.

"I've been training every day. I think that in a month I would have been able to reach an acceptable level. But that's not my plan anymore."

Pauleta, who also spent three seasons at Bordeaux where he was Ligue 1's top scorer in 2002, claimed that he could have joined Monaco but could not bear the thought of competing against PSG again.

"Monaco effectively made me an offer, but I didn't want to play in Ligue 1 in a club other than PSG," he added.

So great is Pauleta's attachment to PSG, where he spent five seasons and twice finished as Ligue 1's top scorer, that he claims he will continue his involvement with the Parisian club as an ambassador.

"I have a meeting with the new president to approach this," he continued. "I agreed this in the extension of my contract with Alain Cayzac. It concerns an ambassadorial post but I don't have more precise details.

"What's certain is that I want to live in Acores for the moment. So why shouldn't I be PSG's eyes in Portugal and Spain to find them good players?"

Pauleta retired from international football after the 2006 World Cup, having scored a record 47 goals in 88 games for Portugal.

The two-time Ligue 1 footballer of the year also lists Deportivo La Coruna among his former clubs, who he helped fire to their only Primera Liga title to date in 2000.


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