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EX-HOOPS TARGET QUITS – AT 33

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FORMER Celtic target James Morrison has quit playing – at the age of 33.

The one-time Scotland international midfielder was on Brendan Rodgers’ radar in the summer of 2016 as part of his recruitment drive.

Morrison admitted he would be interested in moving to the champions, as CQN reported, but the switch never materialised and he remained in English Championship with West Brom.

The player was released by the Midlands side at the end of the season and has decided to quit to take up an academy role with the Hawthorns outfit.

He played 341 games in 12 years for the club and was on the look-out for a new club since leaving in June.

The Darlington-born playmaker represented England up to Under-20 level before earning 46 caps and scoring three goals for Scotland.

Morrison, speaking to the BBC, said: “It’s been really hard to make this decision.

“Football has been my life for so long. It’s difficult to say goodbye to that.

“The opportunity to return to this club to begin some coaching has helped me come to terms with my playing days coming to an end.”

Morrison earned his last international cap two years ago when the Scots beat Slovakia 1-0 in a World Cup qualifier at Hampden.

At club level, he rose through Middlesbrough’s youth ranks to play 97 times for the first team, including an appearance in the 2006 UEFA Cup Final.

His return to West Brom will see him work with the club’s Under-16s, 18s and 23s.

Ex-Celtic gaffer Rodgers made a season-long loan move for the out-of-favour West Brom star on the final day of the August 2016 transfer window.

He wanted to add the strong-running performer to his new-look squad as his sixth signing behind Moussa Dembele, Kolo Toure, Scott Sinclair, Dorus de Vries and Cristian Gamboa.
Morrison said: “It was just an enquiry, that was all. But the club said no.”

 

 
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