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Former Chelsea and Fulham star Andre Schurrle has announced his surprise retirement from football at the age of 29 after cancelling his contract with Borussia Dortmund. World Cup winner Andre Schurrle has announced his shock retirement from football aged just 29.The ex-Chelsea star left Borussia Dortmund after cancelling his contract on Wednesday and was expected to look for a new club.

But the 57-cap Germany international, who helped them to World Cup glory just six years ago in Brazil, has opted to hang up his boots.Schurrle told Der Spiegel : "The decision matured in me for a long time" before saying that: "the depths became deeper and the highlights less and less"."I don't need the applause anymore," he added in a lengthy interview."You always have to play a certain role in order to survive in the business, otherwise you will lose your job and you will not get a new one."

Schurrle still had one year left on his contract with Dortmund when the deal was cancelled this week.He was linked with moves to China, Turkey or elsewhere before the left-field announcement he has given up the sport."Looking back, it's been a time with a lot of ups and downs, and a valuable experience, both in the sporting sense but also privately," Schurrle said in a statement on the club's official website."I'd like to thank the club's bosses and wish the club and its special fans all the best for the future."

The playmaker came through the ranks at Mainz before making his major breakthrough at Bayer Leverkusen.He was snapped up by Chelsea for £18million in 2013 and tipped for big things at Stamford Bridge.It was during his time with the Blues that he became a World Cup winner, helping Germany demolish Brazil in the semi-finals of the World Cup as he scored the final two goals.He set up Mario Gotze's historic winner in extra-time in the final with a pinpoint cross.

After scoring 14 goals in 65 games for Chelsea, he headed back to Germany with Wolfsburg in 2015 and joined Borussia Dortmund at the end of an impressive season.But he failed to make his mark with the club and struggled during a loan spell with Fulham as they were relegated last season.He has spent this season at Spartak Moscow but his deal was not extended due to injury before his decision to retire.

Chelsea are keen on signing the West Ham midfielder Declan Rice this summer.According to Football Insider, they are willing to offer the Hammers players in exchange for the 21-year-old defensive midfielder.Fikayo Tomori, Kurt Zouma and Michy Batshuayi are thought to be the players Chelsea plan to use in a deal for the West Ham star.

Rice is a former Chelsea academy graduate and he has developed into a quality Premier League player. He could be the ideal long term replacement for Ngolo Kante.It will be interesting to see if the Blues can agree on a fee with their London rivals now.Rice is likely to be tempted to return to Stamford Bridge this summer. It would be a major step up in his career and he will feel the need to prove himself at Chelsea as well.The player did not manage to showcase his true potential at the club before and he will feel that he has unfinished business at Chelsea.West Ham could use players like Zouma and Batshuayi next season and they should seriously consider signing one of them in exchange. Rice is a top talent and he is likely to move on eventually. The Hammers must look to make the most of this situation.

Bayer Leverkusen are not ready to sell Kai Havertz to Chelsea - yet.The Blues are the favourites to sign the German playmaker, and the 21-year-old wants to make the move.Kicker says Havertz is ready to go, and Leverkusen are willing to sell, but they want to wait until the end of August.They are still in the Europa League, and their journey in that competition may go on until August 21.And Leverkusen want Havertz focused and involved in those games, and do not want a repeat of the situation with Timo Werner at RB Leipzig, where he is not playing in their Champions League games.Chelsea may still face competition from other teams, such as Manchester United and Bayern Munich, in the race to sign Havertz.

Chelsea are set to receive a huge cash windfall after Eden Hazard helped Real Madrid win the La Liga title.Hazard joined Los Blancos last summer for €100million (£91m) after starring for seven seasons in a Chelsea shirt.But the deal that took him to the Spanish capital included various bonus payments for the West London side, reportedly including clauses that would be triggered if Madrid won La Liga or qualified for the Champions League.

And Frank Lampard's side could benefit to the tune of £18m after Zinedine Zidane's side secured the Spanish league title by beating Villarreal on Thursday night.Madrid had already made sure of their Champions League place for next season before Karim Benzema scored both goals in a 2-1 win over Villarreal which wrested the La Liga title back from Barcelona after two years.Real's qualification for the Champions League is said to be worth €15m (£14m) to Chelsea, while the club's 34th La Liga crown could net the Stamford Bridge outfit €20m (£18m), according to Sports Ration.The cash windfall will no doubt come in handy for Chelsea as Lampard looks to revamp his squad this summer.

Having already spent a combined £89m on striker Timo Werner and winger Hakim Ziyech ahead of next season, Chelsea have also been linked with Bayer Leverkusen midfielder Kai Havertz, Leicester left-back Ben Chilwell and West Ham midfielder Declan Rice, as well as a new keeper.It is thought there would be a further bonus for Chelsea if Hazard were to help his side win the Champions League.

The Spanish giants are 2-1 down to Manchester City in their last-16 tie ahead of the second leg at the Etihad on August 7.Chelsea could receive a total of £130m from Madrid for Hazard if all clauses are fulfilled, although it is not clear how many games the 29-year-old would need to play in order to trigger any of the bonus payments.

Hazard has played 16 times for Madrid in La Liga this season, scoring once and providing six assists. He has also made five Champions League appearances.His former Chelsea teammate Lampard recently spoke of how Christian Pulisic was filling the void left by Hazard."They can both go by players and they're great to watch," the Chelsea manager said."Eden did it here and was sensational in what he did here with his input personally into the club winning trophies."I don't want to get on that comparison too much, but at the same time I don't want to take away from Christian because what he's showing now is a real natural ability, a balance and a speed to dribble with the ball."

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Andre Schurrle Chelsea Fulham Germany World Cup

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