Former England Women captain Casey Stoney has announced her retirement from playing in order to take a role in Phil Neville’s backroom staff.
The 35-year-old defender made her debut in 2000 and was capped 130 times, scoring six goals.
She said on Twitter: “After 23 incredible years it’s time to bid farewell to my playing career and embark on an exciting new chapter.
“I’m delighted to be joining Phil Neville’s @Lionesses’ backroom team! Weds @LFCLadies game will be my last. I’d like to thank everyone that made my dreams come true…”
Stoney, who was awarded an MBE in 2015, began her career at Arsenal, where she had two spells, and also played for Charlton, Chelsea, Lincoln and most recently Liverpool.
She represented Great Britain at the 2012 Olympics and was also part of the England squad that finished third at the 2015 World Cup.
Stoney will take her position in Neville’s backroom team in time for next month’s SheBelieves Cup in America.
She added in a statement on the Football Association website: “Today, I am announcing my playing retirement from the game I have loved all my life.
“Although I am sad to be hanging up my boots, I do so proud of what I have achieved and with great optimism about what the future holds for the women’s game.
“With that in mind, I am hugely excited about starting my next chapter as part of Phil Neville’s Lionesses backroom team. My new role will formally begin in time for the SheBelieves Cup next month.
“Representing and captaining my country was an honour and a privilege. I made 130 appearances for England – as well as skippering the Great Britain team five times at the London 2012 Olympics – which will live long in my memory.
“Hope Powell gave me my first cap in 2000 and made me captain – simply, that changed my life and for that I will be eternally grateful.
“I was lucky to have played in a successful era of women’s football; now it is time for me to give back.
“That starts with me working hard to support and develop the hugely talented group of players England has at the moment.”
Stoney’s last game before her retirement will be for Liverpool against Sunderland on Wednesday.