Bernard Dong Bortey Confirms Retirement From Football
Hearts of Oak ace, Bernard Dong-Bortey has confirmed hanging his boots as a professional footballer.
Bortey, who helped the Phobians to win four Ghana Premier League titles is one of best players to have ever stage in the country's top-flight football.
Bortey did well to establish himself as a star on the local scene but struggled in his bid to forge a decent career abroad on multiple attempts.
The tough-talking attacker first rose to prominence at the 1999 Fifa U17 World Cup, where he netted three times to finish the tournament as the joint-third top scorer.
"I’m not God. Maybe where I reached was the stage God wanted me to finish it for someone to come and continue. I have pain in me but it’s past," he told Goal.com.
"I have to put it behind me because I have three kids who are all playing football, so I have to focus on pushing them. I could not do it but maybe they can do it for me.
"I want to be a coach now. I’ve retired. I was not 100 per cent sure but I have done it.
"I’m still playing football but not competitively. I don’t want to play any more competitive leagues like the Ghana Premier League because I have made the name already.
"Everybody knows my name in Ghana football. So I have to leave for the young ones to take over. Now, I’m a coach. I’m not a footballer anymore. I’ve retired."
The now 37-year-old also played for Al Wasl FC of the United Arab Emirates, Bnei Sakhnin of Israel, Vietnamese side CLB Song Lam and The Panthers of Equatorial Guinea.
Bortey made over 20 appearances for Ghana's senior national team.