Richie Partridge announces retirement
Former Republic of Ireland underage international Richie Partridge has announced his retirement from football, aged 30.
The Dublin-born midfielder started his career with Liverpool, and while a trainee at Anfield, won the 1998 UEFA Under-18 European Championship with Ireland under Brian Kerr. Partly thanks to injuries, he never played in the Premiership, but did make three League Cup appearances in five senior seasons at the club. In 2001, he gained first team experience on loan with Bristol Rovers, and spent the 2002-03 season with Coventry City, where he was voted the Fans’ Player of the Season. He also was called-up to the senior Irish squad against Greece in November 2002 by caretaker boss Don Givens, but didn’t make it off the bench.
Another disappointing season at Liverpool in 2004-05 saw him being released to join Sheffield Wednesday. After one season and just 18 league games, he moved to Rotherham, playing 36 games in 06-07. Next up was two seasons at Chester City, who were relegated in Partridge’s second year. A move to MK Dons, a loan to Kettering, and finally a spell at Stockport in 2010 were his last outings in England. Last September, Partridge signed for Welsh side The New Saints, scoring six goals in his first six games and winning Player of the Month in October. In March of this year, he signed a new contract, but a recurring knee injury has forced him out of the game.
“Richie’s injury unfortunately has brought his career to an end, which is bad news for him and for the club,” TNS boss Mike Davies said this morning.
Speaking to the Sunday Independent in 2009, Partridge listed his greatest achievements in football:
“The first has to be winning the U18 European Championship for Ireland in Cyprus against Germany . We had such a good time with Brian Kerr and the late Noel O’Reilly.
“Next was my debut for Liverpool in the Carling Cup against Stoke City when we won 8-0, and then coming on against Spurs in the Carling Cup, the game went to penalties and I scored one, and we got through to the semi-final, and eventually the final, but the young fellows weren’t involved by then.
“Being involved with the full Irish squad against Greece under Don Givens. Even though I didn’t get on, to be involved at that level was fantastic, it’s a great achievement. I was at Coventry at the time.
“When I look back at the end of my career, I won’t have notched up as many appearances as other pros, but I have had my good times and good clubs, and there’s satisfaction in that too.”