Yaya Toure has ended his playing career and will now focus his efforts on becoming a manager, according to his agent Dimitry Seluk.
The former Manchester City midfielder has been without a club since leaving Olympiakos, where he made just five appearances, last year.
Before that, Toure had successful spells with City and Barcelona, as well as spending time with Monaco, Belgian club Beveren and now-defunct Ukrainian side Metalurh Donetsk.
Seluk revealed Toure’s decision to Russian outlet Sport24, saying: “Yaya decided to end his career as a champion. The farewell match with Manchester City was the real end of his playing career.
“Yaya is one of the best players in Africa and he had one of the brightest careers in the history of African football. Therefore, he should also leave the football beautifully, at the peak.
“We talked for a long time on this topic. Of course, every player wants to play as long as possible. In terms of his physical condition, Yaya could do this at a sufficiently high level for another five years.
“But we came to the conclusion that he, the football player who played for Barcelona and Manchester City, could not lower the bar with his hands.”
Seluk says the 35-year-old has already obtained a coaching licence, and will now focus on forging a career in management – with possible options in Russia and Ukraine.
Seluk said: “Yaya and I chose a different path; to leave as a champion and start a new stage in life – a career as a coach. I am sure Yaya will reach even greater heights than those he achieved as a player.”