American defender Steve Cherundolo ends career due to knee problems

Cherundolo celebrates after the USA qualified for the second round in the 2010 World Cup.

Carl Recine/Action Images

HANNOVER, Germany (AP) Hannover’s United States defender Steve Cherundolo is ending his career immediately because of persistent knee problems.

Cherundolo told reporters on Wednesday that several knee injuries in the last 15 months made it impossible to continue his playing career and that he was moving into a coaching role.

The 35-year-old American played a club-record 302 Bundesliga games for Hannover and took part in three World Cups for the United States.

Cherundolo had two operations on his left knee last year and made only two appearances for Hannover this season.

He will remain with the club as assistant coach for Hannover’s under-23 side.