Pienaar Confession: I Wish I’d Stopped Earlier
Steven Pienaar Has Admitted That He Should Have Retired Earlier
Steven Pienaar had a long career that lasted nearly two decades, but by the end – he says – he wishes he’d called time on his career before coming back to the Absa Premiership.
Pienaar, who turns 36 this week, played in South Africa, the Netherlands, Germany and England during his time as a professional footballer, rising to fame in Liverpool at Everton where he went on to become a major crowd favourite.
Having suffered relegation with Sunderland at the end of last season, Pienaar made a decision to return to Mzansi and play for the reigning league champions, Bidvest Wits, in hope of a final swansong in the country of his birth.
Unfortunately, things didn’t work out, and after just 252 league minutes it was revealed in January that a mutual termination of his Clever Boys contract had been reached. Last month he decided to hang up his boots completely and step into retirement.
In an interview in the latest edition of Soccer Laduma, ‘Schillo’ admitted that he probably took his career a step too far when he came back.
He said, “Looking back, I think that when I got relegated I should’ve just said, “Thank you, this is it.” But I think every player will always have a little child in them that still wants to run around, laughing in the dressing room etc.
“I do wish that I’d stopped earlier now, but that little baby was still there and I wanted to give it another go.”
The former Bafana Bafana international played 15 games for the Black Cats in his last season in the Premier League, leaving the EPL with 21 Everton goals to his name.
Do you think Pienaar should have retired earlier?