After 16 A-League seasons, veteran defender and Newcastle captain Nigel Boogaard has announced his retirement.
After 16 seasons, veteran defender Nigel Boogaard has announced his retirement from the A-League.
The Newcastle Jets captain made the announcement on Friday, a day after a 2-1 win over premiers Melbourne City ensured the Jets avoided this season's wooden spoon.
"I didn't go out last night thinking about it being my last game," an emotional Boogaard said.
"I just wanted to make sure we got a result and got off the bottom of the table.
"Just something nice for the boys to hold on to at the end of the year ... it was just nice to finish off that way."
A member of Central Coast's squad in the inaugural A-League season in 2005-06, Boogaard made 66 appearances for the Mariners across five years.
He then moved to Adelaide in 2010, making over 114 appearances for the Reds and winning an FFA Cup in 2014 before joining hometown club the Jets in 2015.
Promptly made captain, Boogaard made 122 A-League appearances for the Jets with all but one being as the team's leader.
"I've been blessed, I've been able to play for 16 years," the 34-year-old said.
"It's the right time to call it and the start of the year really confirmed for me it was the right time as well."
Boogaard will step away from the game to pursue a career outside of football and spend time with his family.
He has started doing coaching badges but says first and foremost, he's looking forward to just not being a professional footballer.
"I honestly loved every minute of playing for this club and can't wait to cheer the team on from the stands next season."