Paul Scharner decided to retire from the game after he was paid $595,000 to rescind his contract at Hamburg, where he failed to secure himself a spot with the first team. The former Austria international, 33, announced his decision to retire on his Twitter account on Monday.
Scharner had joined Hamburg in the summer of 2012, but injuries and suspensions would blight his season, causing the former Wigan Athletic defender to return to his former club on loan, where eventually won the FA Cup title in addition to being relegated from the Premier League.
At the beginning of the summer, Scharner returned to Hamburg hoping to secure a spot with the first team, but Coach Thorsten Fink left him to play with the reserves. Later in the month, Scharner threatened the club, saying he “would never give up” and warning: “This could turn out to be nasty.”
Eventually, the club paid out his contract. “Hamburg had to pay for their mistakes,” Scharner told a press conference on Tuesday. “From day one, Hamburg had been a disappointment for me. I was never offered a chance. Moreover, the club has no philosophy.” He added: “Top-level soccer is no longer about soccer. It’s only business. To pay €100 million for one player is just wrong,” he said, referring to Gareth Bale’s world-record move to Real Madrid. “Real characters are no longer in demand.”