Costa Rica int’l Segares retires

Chicago Fire and Costa Rica defender Gonzalo Segares (pictured) announced his retirement on February 4, 2015. (Photo: Mexsport)

CHICAGO – Costa Rica international defender Gonzalo Segares announced Wednesday his retirement from soccer.

With the exception of a 12-game stint with Cyprus’ Apollon Limassol in 2010, the 32-year-old played virtually his entire 10-year career with the Chicago Fire of Major League Soccer.

He will become a Fire ambassador and Chicago Fire Academy coach.

“Today is a very sad day for me, as I am announcing my retirement from professional soccer," said Segares, who made 264 competitive appearances for the club.  "It has been an incredible ride for me, filled with many good memories and amazing moments that I will never forget.  This game has given me the honor of representing my country, my club and to make my family proud. I leave the sport today knowing that I left it all in the field for them.

"I had many coaches during this time and all of them have been essential to my development as a player and as a person. It would be unfair to leave one name behind so I would like to deeply thank all of you for all the lessons and patience.”

The 5-11, 170-lb. Segares appeared in 19 games for the Ticos, making his international debut in 2007. He played in eight CONCACAF qualifiers for the 2010 FIFA World Cup and was a member of the side that reached the 2009 CONCACAF Gold Cup semifinals.