Former Cork City star Karl Sheppard forced to retire at 29

Hard-working forward landed major trophies at Turner's Cross
Former Cork City star Karl Sheppard forced to retire at 29

Karl Sheppard celebrates his goal against Levadia Tallinn at Turner's Cross for Cork City in 2017. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

KARL Sheppard enjoyed great success in his four years with Cork City, but has been forced to retired aged 29.

Used as a winger or striker during his stint at Turner's Cross, Sheppard lifted a league title and two FAI Cups, and most recently played for Shelbourne.

However, being diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis has brought a premature end to a career that saw him play in the Europa League group stages with Shamrock Rovers, and also line out for Galway and Fingal.

“365 appearances and 89 goals later it is now time to hang up my playing boots," he said on social media. 

At 29 I should be in the prime of my sporting career, unfortunately 2 months after my best season, I was diagnosed with Psoriatic Arthritis.

“At first I didn’t think this would affect me, however the past two seasons have shown my body cannot meet the demands of professional football. I have tried everything during this time to stay injury free but this was an impossible task. 

Former Cork City attacker Karl Sheppard has retired. Picture: INPHO/Oisin Keniry
Former Cork City attacker Karl Sheppard has retired. Picture: INPHO/Oisin Keniry

“I’d like to thank all the managers, coaches, back room teams and players I have had the pleasure to work with."

Sheppard was capable of coming up with some spectacular goals and was renowned for his ferocious work-rate. He had an interest in coaching and was involved with Munster Senior League side Avondale United, while in Cork.

“I have made numerous friends for life and have made some unforgettable memories. From a magic night in Belgrade to winnings cup finals in the Aviva, not to mention some great nights in-between.

“Lastly I’d like to thank the fans. From the jeers of away fans, to the cheers of the home. Last year showed me without fans footballs nothing. Excited for the next chapter in my life and looking forward to watching LOI games this coming season.”

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