Real Madrid, Germany midfielder Toni Kroos to retire from soccer

Midfielder Toni Kroos won four Champions League titles with Real Madrid. Photo by Mariscal/EPA-EFE
Midfielder Toni Kroos won four Champions League titles with Real Madrid. Photo by Mariscal/EPA-EFE

May 21 (UPI) -- Real Madrid midfielder Toni Kroos will retire from soccer after playing for Germany at Euro 2024, he announced Tuesday on Instagram.

"This decision means that my career as an active footballer will end this summer after the Euro championship," Kroos wrote on the social media platform. "As I have always said: Real Madrid is and will be my last club.


"I am happy and proud, that in my mind I found the right timing for my decision and that I could choose it by my own. My ambition was always to finish my career at the peak of my performance level."

Kroos, 34, won four La Liga titles and four Champions League crowns with Madrid. He made his senior career debut with Bayern Munich of the German Bundesliga in 2007. He also spent time on loan with Bundesliga club Bayer Leverkusen before joining Madrid in 2014.

"July 17, 2014 -- the day of my presentation at Real Madrid, the day that changed my life," Kroos wrote.

"My life as a footballer -- but especially as a person. It was the start of a new chapter at the biggest club in the world. After 10 years, at the end of the season this chapter comes to an end. I will never forget that insolent successful time!


"I would particularly like to thank everyone that welcomed me with an open heart and trusted me. But especially I would like to thank you, dear Madridistas, for your affection and your love from the first day until the last one."

Kroos was on the German national team that won the 2014 World Cup and placed third at the 2010 World Cup. The star midfielder was the top-rated player at the 2014 World Cup, according to the Castrol performance index.

Germany will host Ukraine in a friendly on June 3 in Nuremberg. The Germans will host Greece in another friendly June 7 in Monchengladbach. They will host Scotland in the group stage of Euro 2024 on June 14 in Munich.

Kroos last played for Madrid during their 5-0 win over Alaves on May 14 in Madrid. He logged an assist.

Madrid, who already clinched the La Liga title, will host Real Betis in their season finale at 3 p.m. EDT Saturday at Santiago Bernabeu Stadium. Kroos totaled one goal and eight assists in 32 La Liga appearances this season.

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