Ribéry will « most likely » retire, confirms his agent

Contacted Friday by AFP, Davide Lippi, Franck Ribéry’s agent, confirms that the French striker from Salernitana is close to retiring at 39.

French international striker Franck Ribéry, 39, will « very likely » put an end to his successful career whose last months have been disrupted by injuries with Salernitana, his Italian agent Davide Lippi told AFP, confirming press information. « We are evaluating the question, » said Lippi, saying the player’s choice would « very likely » be retirement.

Absent from the field since August with Salernitana, which he joined last year and where his contract ran until June 2023, Ribéry is therefore preparing to say stop, overtaken by repeated injuries, in particular recurring pain in the knees, according to The Team.

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No announcement of Salernitana « for the moment »

In Italy, the newspaper Il Mattino reports that Ribéry is expected to stay at Salerno, where he was earning 125,000 euros net per month, in a new role alongside the technical staff until 2024. He would like to start coaching training soon. Contacted by AFP, Salernitana said it had no announcement to make « for the moment ». Ribéry’s historical agent, Alain Migliaccio, could not be reached immediately. Ribéry has not played since a 1-0 defeat against AS Roma on August 14.

This probable retirement should end 22 years of professional career, the peak of which was the 2012-2013 season with Bayern Munich, author that year of the Championship-Cup-Champions League treble. « My best season was 2013, what we did was crazy, we can’t forget that, » he summed up in 2019 when he left Bayern, of which he became a legend. Walking on water in the spring of 2013, Ribéry had won the UEFA trophy for best player of the season and many observers even considered him worthy of the Ballon d’Or, which ultimately went to Cristiano Ronaldo, to his great disappointment.

A complicated story with the Blues

The other regret of his career is the absence of a trophy won with the Blues, whose winger with 81 caps (16 goals) will have known the bright side (2006 World Cup final) like the dark years, until to Knysna’s nightmare at the 2010 World Cup. At the time, he was accused of being a leader during the French team’s strike in the middle of the South African World Cup, which earned him to drag the label of « caïd », a qualifier used at the time by the Minister of Sports Roselyne Bachelot. From there dates his disenchantment with the French public, reinforced the same year by the « Zahia » affair, when the justice system reproached him for priced relations with a minor prostitute. He was finally released in 2014.

Germany will have better appreciated the talent and the endearing and schoolboy personality of « Kaiser Franck », who chained clubs at the start of his career (Boulogne, Alès, Brest, Metz, Galatasaray) before hatching in Marseille and to flourish at Bayern Munich (2007-2019), with nine crowns in the Bundesliga at stake. After leaving Bavaria in 2019, Ribéry played extra time in Italy, first at Fiorentina (2019-2021). Then, with Salernitana, he helped maintain the club in May 2022 before being overtaken by injuries.

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