Alan Hansen to retire after 41 years on the ball

The veteran football commentator Alan Hansen has announced his retirement after 22 years at the heart of the BBC's Match of the Day programme.

Alan Hansen Credit: Suzan/Suzan/EMPICS Entertainment

The former Liverpool captain said he would stay until the end of next year's World Cup in Brazil but would not renew his contract, which expires next July.

He said: "I’ve been in football for 41 years and I’m going out right at the top, just as I did at Liverpool.

"The plan was always that I would retire at 55. I kept going, but I finally decided to retire during Euro 2012."