Is Laursen Set To Retire?
A number of different reports are around today which state that Martin Laursen has accepted the need to retire and that a public announcement is only a matter of days away.
Quoted in the Evening Mail, Laursen said:
"I would like to have a nice life after football. Hopefully, I have many years left in me to live, so of course I`m thinking of how much I want to put pressure on my knee to come back.'
Martin currently faces another lay off of 6 months after suffering a setback in his recovery at our training camp in Dubai last month. He faces another knee operation now and it appears it's all getting too much as he sensibly looks to his own future outside the game.
Martin O'Neill has apparently left the decision completely up to Laursen, and as ever Laursen is full of praise for the manager and the club stating that he has thoroughly enjoyed his time here, he thinks he's played some of his best football over the last few seasons and he's pleased we are moving in the right direction as a club.
Speaking to the Danish press yesterday Laursen was non committal on his future, other than confirming that he would like to carry on in football when he's forced to hang up his boots in one capacity or another.
"I`m considering if I should end my career now a year before the contract runs out, or if I should keep playing football and then go through the operation, do the necessary work to get back and then see if I can get back or what has to happen.
"It`s weird for me in many ways. It really is. I would have liked to keep on playing football. It has gone so well for me lately.
"My future will be decided by the end of next week.
"If it turns out that I have to stop playing, then I will be able to look back on a long career that I can be happy about."
A career he can be very happy about. He has been phenomenal for us and it's no surprise to see we have struggled mostly in games he hasn't been available for.
Dodgy knees and all, Laursen has made a name for himself at Villa as one of the very best centre halves we have had the luxury of seeing in action.
If he has to hang up his boots it'll be a great loss to us as a club and no doubt a very sad day for Martin. But as he says himself he can look back fondly at his time on the pitch, and as many supporters have echoed on the forum it will be the right decision for him as he has to consider his own future and his own health.
So next question is, can we get him back as a defensive coach please. He belongs at this club.