Former Blackpool midfielder Andrea Orlandi forced to take early retirement

Andrea Orlandi made 30 appearances for Blackpool
Andrea Orlandi made 30 appearances for Blackpool
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Former Blackpool midfielder Andrea Orlandi has retired from football at the age of 34 due to a heart issue.

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The Spanish star made 30 appearances for the Seasiders during the 2014/15 Championship campaign, scoring four times.

He made the move to Bloomfield Road after being released by Brighton & Hove Albion, having earlier turned out for Swansea City.

Upon leaving Blackpool, he moved to Cyprus where he played for both Anorthosis and Apoel Nicosia.

He later moved to Italy, where he spent a two-year stint with Novara before joining Indian side Chennaiyin FC.

He returned to Italy to sign for Serie C outfit Virtus Entella, which is where the heart problem was detected.

Orlandi admitted an operation to try to carry on playing would have been too risky.

Speaking about his retirement, Orlandi said: “I felt like this was coming after I had the medical but until it was made official I still had that glimmer of hope.

“Sadly it is not safe for me to play on and I was devastated when the doctor broke the news.

"However, I am coming to terms with it quite quickly and am so thankful to all the medical staff who have helped me.

"I could have had an operation to try and carry on playing, but at 34 it would have been risky and stupid to do so. I have to think about my future more than football now.

“The truth is I could have died during my career, so I must look at the bright side that I am still here with my wife and kids and that I enjoyed many years playing the game I love.

“It is still very early so I have not planned my next step yet. For now, I will enjoy some time with my wonderful family.”