Umeå's Ljungberg retires from football

Umeå IK striker Hanna Ljungberg, the leading scorer in the history of UEFA women's club competition, has announced her retirement from football aged 30 following her latest injury blow.

Hanna Ljungberg
©Getty Images

Umeå IK striker Hanna Ljungberg, the leading scorer in the history of UEFA women's club competition, has announced her retirement from football aged 30 following her latest injury blow.

Silverware
While playing for Umeå in July, Ljungerg tore the cruciate ligament in her right knee for the second time. Having undergone surgery after suffering the problem in 2004, Ljungberg was advised to immediately call time on her illustrious career, having bowed out of international football as Sweden's all-time leading scorer with 72 goals in 130 appearances last year.

Honours
She joined Umeå in 1998 and won six Swedish titles and aided their victories in the 2002/03 and 2003/04 UEFA Women's Cups, though missed the latter stages of the second success through injury. Her tally of 39 UEFA Women's Cup goals is the record in a competition that has become the UEFA Women's Champions League this season. She also helped Sweden to the finals of the 2001 UEFA Women's European Championship and 2003 FIFA Women's World Cup.

'Unique talent'
In recent years, though, her career has been blighted by injury: she missed the whole of 2004 following her first ligament tear, suffered a bout of concussion at the Algarve Cup in 2006 and had to leave the squad only days before the last year's Olympic Games were to begin because of a thigh injury. In order to concentrate on her domestic game, Ljungberg retired from international football in the wake of her Olympic disappointment, only for misfortune to strike again last month.

Risk
"Of course I wanted to complete the season but it's not worth the risk," said Ljungberg. Umeå face Ukraine's Zhilstroy-1 Kharkov in the UEFA Women's Champions League Round of 32 on 30 September and 7 October and lead Linköpings FC by two points in the Damallsvenskan. 

To read an interview with Ljungberg on her international career, click here.

Top