Republic of Ireland forward Kevin Doyle has decided to call it quits on his football career following advice from his doctor.
The 34-year-old, who last played for MLS side Colorado Rapids, has suffered multiple concussions over the course of his career and now suffers with regular headaches.
“Today I’m sad to announce that after listening to medical advice I will no further part in this season and will be retiring,” Doyle said in a statement, as reported by The Telegraph).
“This year it has been clear to me that heading the ball was becoming problematic, and causing me to have repeated headaches. Two concussions this season and numerous others over the years have made this more concerning.
“After consulting with experts in the field it has been decided that to avoid the possibility of these symptoms become more serious and permanent, I will be hanging up my boots for good.”
Doyle, who made 64 appearances for the Republic of Ireland and played in the Premier League for Reading, Wolves and Crystal Palace was a frequent scorer of headed goals. There are suspicions that, coupled with the concussions he's suffered, his exploits on the pitch have been the main contributor to his current issues.
The player made over 160 appearances for Reading and Wolves in England, but had spent the last two years playing with the Colorado Rapids in America.
While his playing days are well past the era of heavy leather balls, medical experts believe that the increased speeds of modern balls due to them being lighter, as well as the avenue they create for collisions, hasn't made football any safer.