Having announced his retirement on Monday, Italian midfielder Andrea Pirlo will go down as one of the classiest players to lace a pair of boots.
Pirlo, who played his last match for New York City this weekend, called time on one of the most illustrious careers a footballer could hope for.
The 38-year-old, who has won the World Cup, won the Serie A six times and was named in UEFA’s Euro All-Time XI in 2016, has received a flood of tributes from all corners of football.
He was known by fellow Italian teammates as l'architetto (the Architect) and became a household name during his time at AC Milan, where he won two Serie A titles and two Champions Leagues in 10 years at the San Siro.
In 2011, Pirlo then moved on to Juventus, winning four more Serie A league titles, before leaving to become part of New York City’s squad in their inaugural season in the MLS.
He also accumulated 116 caps for the Italian national team, making joint fourth in the rankings alongside Daniele De Rossi.
Pirlo announced his retirement via Twitter, where gave thanks to every team and teammate he has played with across his career.
Among the flood of tributes, Gary Lineker took to Twitter to pay tribute to the legendary Italian, tweeting out his short but poignant show of respect.
The former England international wrote: "Andrea Pirlo has announced his retirement from football. One of the great midfielders of his generation. A beautiful footballer. #peerless"
After a career spanning 23 years, Andrea Pirlo will be remembered as one of the greatest midfielders of all time.