Speaking to the BBC, former Sunderland and Middlesbrough midfielder Lee Cattermole has announced his retirement from professional football.

After his contract with Dutch side VVV-Venlo came to an end earlier this summer, former Sunderland and Middlesbrough midfielder Lee Cattermole has announced his retirement from professional football.

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Cattermole has confirmed he will not be continuing his playing career. He will now opt to pursue a coaching career, saying that the time is right to bring an end to his days as a player.

Speaking to the BBC about his retirement, Cattermole said it is a difficulty decision to make but will now turn his attention to become an “even better coach or manager” than he was a player. He said:

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“Ordinarily I don’t think it would have been this year, my aim would have been to play two more seasons. If the season hadn’t finished like it did in May, then things might not have been like this, but I think this is right.

“With the current situation, the amount of time I have had at home and a great season in Holland, the time is right for me to look into going down the coaching route.

“I will be going from being an old player to being one of the youngest coaches. I am happy with my playing career, although I’m sure I could have done better. I could have done worse as well. I will learn from those things and I want to make sure I am an even better coach or manager than I was a player.”

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The 33-year-old midfielder came through the youth academy with Middlesbrough before moving to Wigan in 2008. One year later, Cattermole joined Sunderland, where he has spent the majority of his career. In his 10 years with the Black Cats, Cattermole played in 262 games.

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Upon leaving Sunderland, Cattermole joined VVV-Venlo, where he played 11 times before his departure.

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