Career retirement in football players

systematic revision

  • António Carapinheira University of Beira Interior
  • Pedro Mendes IPAM
  • Pedro Guedes Carvalho ISMAI, Superior Institute of Maia, Research Center in Sports Sciences, Health Sciences and Human Development, CIDESD
  • Bruno Travassos Universidade da Beira Interior


This article aimed to characterize the retirement of the sports career in football players. A systematic literature search was performed according to the PRISMA method. From all the publications, eight were selected that fulfilled all the inclusion criteria. The results revealed that, in general, the former football players finish their career between the ages of 31 and 35, reported a career span between 8 and 11 years, and secondary education level. Regarding the quality of retirement, it was reported that voluntary retirement was mainly due to age and associated with psychological and social problems. Few data were reported regarding the available resources, highlighting, however, coping strategies through support from family and friends, and players maintain a career linked to sports. Only one study revealed the existence of a program to support the retirement of a sports career.