Martin Hinteregger

Eintracht Frankfurt and Austrian footballer Martin Hinteregger has announced his retirement at the age of 29. The Suddeutsche Zeitung writes that this happened against the backdrop of a scandal that concerned the footballer’s ties with an Austrian far-right politician.

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Martin Hinteregger

(Photo: Eibner Pressefoto / Imago Images / Global Look Press)

Football player of the German “Eintracht” and the Austrian national team Martin Hinteregger announced his retirement. Midfielder statement published club press office.

Eintracht Frankfurt reported that on June 23, in a personal conversation, Hinteregger told the club’s board of his desire to end his professional career and asked to be released from obligations under the contract, which is valid until June 30, 2024.

“The Board of Directors granted this demand after intensive negotiations with the player and his agent Christian Sand, as well as after consulting with head coach Oliver Glazner, and suspended the Austrian’s contract,” the statement said.

Hinteregger himself explained his decision as follows: “Last fall, I had the first thoughts about ending my career. I found myself in a difficult phase in terms of sports: my results fluctuated. The victories were no longer so pleasant, but each defeat caused double pain. The growth of my performance in the spring and our joint success in the Europa League further motivated me to say goodbye to big sport.”

How writes Suddeutsche Zeitung, Hinteregger was recently heavily criticized for doing business with a far-right politician. We are talking about Heinrich Zickle, who until 2021 worked in the city council of Graz from the far-right Austrian Freedom Party (FPÖ), and in his youth was a member of the German neo-Nazi organization Nationalist Front, which was banned.

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On Hinteregger’s connection to Zickl became known after the footballer took a picture with the politician and his mother, Elisabeth, who in 2000 served as Austrian Minister of Social Affairs, also from the FPÖ. The photo was taken during the Hinty Cup. Hinteregger organized this event every year so that several thousand fans could communicate with him. Also, within the framework of the cup, a tournament was held for amateur teams with a small prize fund. As a rule, the athlete held the Hinti Cup in Germany, but this year he moved it to his native Austrian province of Carinthia.

For doing business with a right-wing politician, Hinteregger was heavily criticized by the public and subsequently severed all ties with the Zickl family. As the Suddeutsche Zeitung notes, despite this, the footballer continued to cause negative public opinion because of the words said in interviews that he gave after it became known about his connections with the Zikls.

“Emotional, perhaps thoughtless words on my part caused irritation, and I would like to apologize for this. I’m very regret about it. Once again, I will state it quite clearly: I condemn right-wing, intolerant and inhuman ideas in the strongest possible way, ”the Eintracht press service quotes Hinteregger.

29-year-old Hinteregger is a Red Bull graduate from Salzburg. He also managed to play for Borussia Mönchengladbach and Augsburg. He spent the last three seasons at Eintracht. He played for the team in 138 matches, in which he scored 14 goals and made six assists.

As part of Red Bull, he became the champion of Austria four times and the owner of the country’s cup. With Eintracht, he won the Europa League in May. He played more than 50 matches for the Austrian national team.

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