Teddy: Dad Said 'Play On`
"Teddy always trained hard and gave it his all, although I have to say he had a knack of knowing when to get injured - around November so he could get a sneaky week in the Bahamas. Playing with Teddy was enjoyable because he's got an exceptional football brain. He was always talking with you." - former Manchester United forward, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, The Guardian 2006.
Teddy Sheringham`s father Paul wanted the Colchester United striker to angle for Sir Stanley Matthews` record of pulling on a professional jersey at 50 years young.
But yesterday Teddy announced his pending retirement - he will quit at the end of the season - after nearly a quarter of a century in the game at 41, having played for nine different clubs.
"My dad wanted me to carry on and beat Matthews' record, but this season is the right time to bow out," he said, confirming the story first somewhat surprisingly broken in yesterday morning`s Times by former teammate and close friend Tony Cascarino.
Sheringham said: "After a long and fun-filled career, I have decided this season will be my last. I've had a fantastic time and want to thank all those who have contributed to my career and helped me along the way."
Sheringham has set all kinds of records, being the oldest player currently strutting his stuff in the football league. He is still Milwall`s all-time leading marksman and helped them achieve a brief spell in the top flight in 1988.
Sheringham said: "I've no immediate thoughts about going into management, but football has always been my life and hopefully I will be back at some point in the future. Until then I have to try and help Colchester stay in the Championship."
The tributes have already come rolling in for the former England international and current manager Geraint Williams echoed the positive nature of the sentiment being felt toward Sheringham.
"I can't speak highly enough of him, he's mixed in with the dressing room, he's one of the lads," said Williams yesterday.
"His professionalism is legendary and he's proving that again here, and every time he's gone out on the pitch he's given us something.
"He's got a will to win that you can't instill in someone and he's been fantastic for this club.
"I think Teddy would have liked to have done it his way, so that's a bit disappointing for him but Teddy's a big boy and he makes his own decisions in life," added his manager, talking about the Cascarino revelation.
"He's earned the right to make any decision he wants," said Williams.
"Let's have a little bit of decorum and let Teddy tell people what he wants to do, I think that's the way it should be. He's earned that right through his career."
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