By Ros Satar
Last Updated: 15/01/20 4:27pm
Former England striker Eni Aluko has announced her retirement.
The 32-year-old, who won 102 caps for the Lionesses, left Juventus in December after nearly 18 months with the Serie A champions.
Writing in The Players’ Tribune, Aluko wrote a letter thanking football for the “crazy, unbelievable journey” it has taken her on during her career, which began in 2001.
“When we met… I was just a girl from a council estate in Birmingham. I could never have imagined the crazy, unbelievable journey you would take me on,” she wrote.
“You have given me the dream of playing in the US, the pride of representing England, the thrill of winning titles with Chelsea, the adventure of playing for Juventus in Italy.
“Whenever I have faced obstacles, you have shattered them. Whenever I have had great expectations, you have exceeded them.”
The forward competed in three World Cups, two Euros and represented Great Britain at the London 2012 Olympics, scoring 33 goals in total before her last international appearance in April 2016.
She came through the ranks at Birmingham City and Charlton Athletic before making her name at Chelsea.
Aluko played in the US for three years before returning to Birmingham, and then Chelsea for seven years, ending her career playing for Juventus.
In 2016 she made misconduct allegations against former England Women boss Mark Sampson that resulted in scrutiny of his behaviour and the Football Association’s handling of the complaints.
That episode concluded in October 2017 when a third investigation found Sampson made racially discriminatory remarks to Aluko and fellow player Drew Spence in what were described as “ill-judged attempts at humour”.