Kiessling: I may have to retire

Chelsea women play Israel to help tackle racism

Bayer 04 Leverkusen striker Stefan Kiessling says persistent injuries have forced him to consider retiring from the game.

Earlier this year, Kiessling signed a contract extension with Leverkusen through to 2018, but is now unsure if he will be able to see out the duration.

“It might happen [that I retire],” the 32-year-old told the Rheinische Post newspaper.

“If the pain becomes too much and I realise that I have to sit out often, then I would have to be honest with myself and say that it no longer makes any sense.

“If that were to be the way things would end, then certainly it’s not the kind any professional footballer wants, but I am not thinking at the moment about that being the case.”

After aggravating a hip problem in a Europa League clash with Sporting CP back in February, the Germany international has not yet rejoined the rest of the squad for pre-season and is training separately.

But Kiessling still hopes to be ready for action when the Bundesliga season begins in two weeks’ time.

“I’m not giving up hope, particularly not now I can see progress being made,” he said.

“I am giving everything to make sure my career doesn’t come to a stupid end, but if the time does come when it no longer works, then I won’t be angry.”