Rickie Lambert has announced his retirement from football after almost 20 years as a professional footballer.
The striker has played for nine different clubs in his career, the most recent of which was Cardiff City, where he joined at the end of last year on a two-year contract from West Bromwich Albion, but left in July.
Lambert got his dream move to Liverpool – the club he supported growing up – in 2014, but he spent just one year at Anfield after failing to become a regular fixture in the team.
Southampton was where the forward spent the majority of his career, and during his five-year spell he helped the team earn two promotions.
The 35-year-old, who spoke of his “ups and downs” in his retirement statement, also represented England 11 times and managed to score on three occasions.
— Simon Peach (@SimonPeach) October 2, 2017
Lambert’s career may have dwindled, but the striker racked up 701 career appearances and scored 241 goals.
Judging by the reaction of Southampton fans, the forward will go down as a club legend, and many want him to return to St Mary’s in a coaching capacity.
1️⃣ true #SaintsFC legend
We wish you every success in retirement, Rickie! 😇 pic.twitter.com/Dr4CSDGYkw
— Southampton FC (@SouthamptonFC) October 2, 2017
— Tom Forder (@tomforder69) October 2, 2017
— Dan Dove 🕊 (@xDove_) October 2, 2017
Happy retirement Sir Rickie Lambert, true #saintsfc legend 💪
— Nathaniel Harmer (@nattyharmer) October 2, 2017
— Max Wilkinson (@mpmwilko) October 2, 2017
— Matt Hemsley (@m_hemsley) October 2, 2017
— Alex Bourne (@alexgbourne) October 2, 2017
Lambert Legend #SaintsFC
— Josh Moody (@joshmoody95) October 2, 2017
— Nickkkk (@nick_malcom) October 2, 2017
I would like to think that #SaintsFC could find a ambassador role for Rickie Lambert sometime as he was a fantastic ambassador on the pitch
— Mark Griffin (@mgriff62) October 2, 2017
happy retirement, rickie lambert. thank you for everything that you've done for our club, you'll be remembered as a legend here ❤️#saintsfc
— ️ㅤ (@sfcvkyle) October 2, 2017
— stevelanham (@Stevelanham) October 2, 2017