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banner Tuesday, 16 October, 2001, 10:44 GMT 11:44 UK
Boban retires
Zvonomir Boban (l)
Zvonomir Boban (left) has struggled with injuries
Former Croatia international Zvonimir Boban has retired from football.

It follows his failure to win a regular first-team place at new club Celta Vigo after moving from AC Milan.

"I am hardly playing in the team and after thinking it over I decided that this was the best option," Boban told a news conference.

The decision to come to Celta Vigo has turned out to be an error in sporting terms
Zvonomir Boban

"I came to Vigo with great hopes that I could be a part of the club's plans for this year, but I no longer feel that this is possible.

"I'm sad about it but I think that this is the fairest thing to do because I can't bear it when I am not playing a leading role in a team.

"I came to Celta to play and try to achieve great things, but it wasn't to be.

"So it is best for us to leave on good terms as I do not want to cause the side any problems," he said.

"The decision to come to the club has turned out to be an error in sporting terms," he added.

The 33-year-old joined the Galician club at the beginning of August in a loan deal from AC Milan.
Manuel Rui Costa
Rui Costa's arrival hastened Boban's departure from Milan

The move did not come as a surprise after the arrival of Portugese playmaker Rui Costa at the San Siro.

But he has faced competition for a berth in the Celta midfield from established players Alexander Mostovoi and Valery Karpin.

Boban made his name as a player after moving to Italy from Dinamo Zagreb in 1991.

After a season on loan at Bari he returned to AC Milan, helping the side to four Italian titles and the European Cup in 1994.

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