Rob Swaine: I know now is the right time to call it a day
ROB SWAINE has announced his retirement from playing football, aged 33.
The Essex-based centre-half was Bromley’s captain when the club won the Conference South title in 2015, the Hayes Lane club’s first league title since 1961.
Injuries has forced the former Chelmsford City, Billericay Town (several spells), Bromley, Maidstone United, Welling United, Brentwood Town and Wealdstone centre-half to announce his retirement on Saturday morning.
“With Covid and injuries limiting me playing for the past two years and now having my two operations that will keep me out for the next 10-12 months, I know now is the right time to call it a day,” Swaine said in a statement on Twitter.
“I’ve had an amazing career and have met some amazing people who I’ll be friends with for life.
“The memories I made, particularly at Bromley and Billericay, I will never forget – winning three league titles and a fair few cups too.
“I’d like to thank all of the fans who supported me and my clubs, the managers who showed belief in me and most importantly my team mates who made football enjoyable.”
Swaine offered this advice for younger players.
“Truth be told I fell out of love with football years ago after making the mistake of chasing the money,” added Swaine.
“My advice to any players out there, particularly the younger ones, is not to make the same mistake I did.
“I left for a 60% pay rise and it was still the biggest mistake of my career.
“Play somewhere that you enjoy playing, which is incredibly important. The grass is not always greener.
“My success was predominately down to my hard work, not so much talent. Work-rate and communication will get you further than you think.
“Good luck to you all and once again thank you.”
Current Hampton & Richmond Borough goalkeeper Alan Julian paid tribute to his former team-mate, that also won the Isthmian League Premier Division title at Hayes Lane and Billericay Town.
“We argued and we celebrated, what a centre-back, a privilege to play behind you and achieve two league titles with you at Bromley and Billericay Town and above all that an honour to call you a friend. I wish you the very best in your retirement,” said the 38-year-old.
Swaine, a personal trainer, added that winning the league title at Bromley was “one of the best days of my life.”