Newport County’s David Pipe has announced he will retire at the end of the season.
The Exiles legend has made over two hundred appearances for the club across two spells and captained them to promotion to the football league in 2013.
The thirty-five-year-old won one cap for Wales in 2003 and also played for Coventry City, Notts County, Bristol Rovers and Cheltenham Town.
Newport County initially signed Pipe in 2011 on his release from prison after being jailed for thirty-eight months for fracturing the skull of another man in an unprovoked attack in Bristol.
He left South Wales in 2014 for spells at Forest Green and Eastleigh before returning to Rodney Parade in January 2017.
Discussions took place about Pipe joining Michael Flynn’s coaching staff, but the long-serving defender has decided his future lies in setting up a local gym for families and children.
Reflecting on his decision, Pipe told the South Wales Argos: ‘It’s not a physical thing, it’s more a mental thing.’
“I’ve been in football for twenty years. I came out of it in difficult circumstances and came back into it thanks to this football club, but I feel like I’ve been in it for thirty years rather than twenty.’
‘So I’ll be making a clean cut from football at the end of this season.’
The Veteran right-back is also looking to develop a mentoring programme which could be rolled out across schools in the local area targeting students who perhaps struggle and find it difficult within the education system.
Exile fans soon took to Twitter to lavish praise and thanks on the popular player who, despite struggling to get a place in Flynn’s starting line-up since Christmas, has been at the centre of many of their recent successes and highpoints.
Here is a small selection of their responses to the news, most highlighting Pipe’s exemplary attitude both on and off the pitch.
Thank you pipey your a hero
— Alan Chard (@ChardAlan) April 23, 2019
What a legend this man is and not just on the pitch he seems such a lovely down to earth bloke who always has time for the fans and everyone associated with the club
— Claire (@brazelclaire) April 23, 2019
Awesome belief, positivity and determination that lifted this club when it needed a leader. Pipey thank you and good luck for the future ???
— SouthamptonExile (@SotonExile) April 23, 2019
Gutted ?? True legend, always gave his all for the club ?? All the best for the future Pipey ??
— Olivia Gibson (@Welsh_Olivia) April 23, 2019
Thanks for everything, Pipey. Having his photo taken with you a few years back after winning at Exeter is what cemented my son as a County fan! Your dedication and determination have been immense. #ncafc pic.twitter.com/0DfYWycAMd
— Ed Bridges (@DrEdBridges) April 23, 2019
Proper servant to the club. Shame it’s coming to the end. Best of luck to him with the new venture
— Robert Poyner (@booshpoyner79) April 23, 2019
I don’t think I would ever be ready for this day ?? will always be my favourite county player! Thanks for the memories Pipey! True county legend.. good luck for the future!?? pic.twitter.com/oqwxHQJsoV
— daniellenotleyx (@daniellenotleyx) April 23, 2019
Brilliant servant to the club. Captained County to the football league and has always given 100% when called upon. Absolute legend of the club. Let’s hope the club put on a testimonial of some sort for Pipey in the summer against Rovers maybe! #UTC
— Eddy (@ChrisEddy_7) April 23, 2019