Former Swansea City stalwart Angel Rangel has announced his retirement from professional football.
The Spaniard, who has spent the last two years at fellow Championship side QPR, hasn’t played a minute of competitive football since rupturing his Achilles against Luton Town in July 2020.
He will be best remembered for his time with the Swans between 2007 and 2018, helping the club win two promotions from League One to the Premier League.
Rangel was in the Swansea side that won their first major trophy when they beat Bradford City back in the 2013 League Cup final.
“I was ready to go back to train with QPR, but my youngest – he’s 10 – said he missed me, and I was his best friend,” Rangel told the Swansea City website.
“That broke my heart. I’ve been away from home for three years, so I thought what am I doing? I’m 38, just enjoy family time.
“I’m healthy and I’ve got lots of incredible memories, so it’s the right time for me to retire.
“I just want to take time to spend with my family and enjoy that. Of course, football has been a major part of my life and I’ve learned a lot, so I think I can give back.
“I’ll take time to speak to some of the coaches I’ve played under, and then get my badges. Then we’ll see what happens.”
Rangel, who’s now set to move back to Swansea to be with his wife Nikki and their three children, left the Swans in 2019 as one of their most beloved heroes.
He was spotted by Roberto Martinez playing semi-professional football in Spain, and went on to play nearly 350 games for the South Wales side, playing an instrumental part in their rise to the Premier League.
Reflecting on his time at Swansea, he said: “I came to Wales not knowing any English, I didn’t know anything about Swansea, but it was the chance I had to take, and it’s paid off in so many ways for me.
“I was taking a risk, but I had to follow my dream. I was only scouted because the scouting team’s plane journey from Barcelona was delayed a few hours, so they watched another game and signed me – even though they were watching someone else. It was destiny I suppose.”