Now 38, Pirlo has decided to bring down the curtain on a career that has taken him all through Italy with stints at Brescia, Inter Milan, AC Milan, and Juventus.
“You realise that the time has come,” he told La Gazzetta dello Sport. “Every day you have physical problems, you cannot train as you want because you always have some problem.
“At my age, that’s enough. It’s not that you can go on forever until the age of 50. I’ll do something else.
“At 38, it’s just right to give young players room. I’m not angry. Instead, I will give a hand to team-mates and to the coach.”
A World Cup winner in 2006, Pirlo earned 116 caps for Italy as he forged a reputation as one of the world’s finest midfield passmasters.