Sergio Aguero has announced his immediate retirement from football, aged 33, due to health reasons.
The Argentine striker had undergone heart tests after leaving the field, holding his chest during a match for his club Barcelona in October.
Aguero tearfully told a press conference on Wednesday that he had decided to retire after his condition had been assessed.
“I’d like to stay here and keep helping my teammates,” he said, “but things happen for a reason.”
Aguero said he had made the decision to stop playing 10 days ago when he was told that there was a big possibility that he could not play again.
He was joined at Barcelona's Camp Nou Stadium on Wednesday by his teammates, club officials, family, and former players.
The 33-year-old is one of the world's most well-known players, despite only joining Barcelona this year from English champions Manchester City.
Aguero made his name in the Premier League, scoring 184 goals - the most by any overseas player - as well as 12 hat-tricks.
In total, he netted 260 times for City, including a dramatic stoppage-time winner against Queens Park Rangers that clinched the Premier League on the final day of the 2011-12 season.
"Kun" Aguero had only moved to England in 2011 from Atletico Madrid after a sparkling young career in Spain and his native Argentina.
He was one of the youngest players to make his debut in Argentina’s top division, at the age of 15 for Independiente, and had spoken about potentially finishing his career there.
Aguero also scored 41 times for his country in 97 matches, as well as winning the 2021 Copa America, a gold medal in Beijing in 2008, and two world titles with Argentina’s youth teams.
But the striker had dealt with injuries problems in recent years and had only played five times for Barcelona before he was forced to leave the field on October 30 during their La Liga match against Alaves.
His retirement comes just six months after Denmark's Christian Eriksen suffered a cardiac arrest during a UEFA Euro 2020 match.