Shamrock Rovers star Keith Fahey retires due to injury aged 32

Keith Fahey, in what turned out to be his final game, against former club St Pat's in May
Keith Fahey, in what turned out to be his final game, against former club St Pat's in May

Shamrock Rovers and the League of Ireland as a whole were dealt a blow today with the news that Keith fahey has had to retire from football, aged 32.

The midfielder signed for Rovers in the close season from rivals St Pat's, a team the Dubliner played for three times during his career.

Fahey had a hip operation in May and after medical advice he has been forced to hang up his boots.

In a statement on the Rovers website, Fahey said: “Unfortunately I have had to come to this decision after taking advice from the doctor and surgeon, I feel that it is the right time to finish playing professional football. I’d like to thank everyone that has supported me, managed me and played with me during my time playing football.”

Fahey began his career with Arsenal and Aston Villa but it was two spells at St Pat's that really brought him to the attention of scouts from the UK.

Fahey signed with Birmingham City in 2008 and he helped them to promotion to the Premier League in 2009 and a sensational League Cup win over Arsenal in 2011.

He made 16 apearances for Ireland and he scored a vital goal in one of the qualification games for Euro 2012, the winner in the 1-0 victory over Armenia in Yerevan.

Injury meant he missed the tournament and his health issues also contributed to his move back to the domestic game.

“Keith will be a big loss to Shamrock Rovers and the League of Ireland in general,” said Rovers boss Pat Fenlon speaking about Fahey’s retirement. “He has been a central part of our squad this season and has been a great influence on the players, particularly the younger members of our squad.”

“We will miss his experience at the club, experience he brought from playing at the top level of English football, in addition to his international career, and I want to wish him all the best in his retirement.”