Saturday July 9 2011
Lippi salutes 'great man' Cannavaro

Marcello Lippi marks the end of “an extraordinary career” with Fabio Cannavaro's retirement. “He's a great player, but above all a great man.”

The Coach worked with Cannavaro throughout his career at Juventus and Italy, winning the 2006 World Cup together.

The 37-year-old defender has announced his retirement, though he will stay on in Dubai for three years as a director at Al-Ahli.

“Cannavaro is a great player, but above all a great man,” Lippi told Sky Sport Italia.

“He had an extraordinary career that was topped off with the victory in the World Cup. I speak to Fabio often and we have been in contact recently.

“He is very satisfied with this experience in Dubai, but recently his knee problems flared up again.

“It could well be this is why he has decided to hang up his boots. Now we all have to stand by him.”

Cannavaro, who won the 2006 Ballon d'Or and World Player of the Year award, confirmed injuries were behind his decision.

“Football is my life, so I am very sad, but the knee just doesn't hold up anymore. Therefore I announce my retirement.

“I intend to stay at Al-Ahli as a director for the next three years. Despite my sadness at this decision, I have no choice: I have to leave the playing field.”

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