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Udinese chief urges Di Natale not to retire

Udinese President Giampaolo Pozzo has asked striking star Antonio Di Natale to reconsider his decision to retire at the end of the season.

At the age of 36, Antonio Di Natale is ready to hang up his boots at the end of the current campaign, but Udinese don't seem ready to lose him.

The pint-sized marksman has been one of Serie A's most consistent predators and has been finding the net for Udinese since 2004 where he is a hero.

With 162 goals in 313 outings for the Zebrette to his name, Di Natale has already assured legendary status at the Stadio Friuli, but his announcement that he will quit in the summer has pained Udinese's chief Giampaolo Pozzo.

"If Antonio makes a certain choice at the end of the day I won't be able to influence him," Pozzo said on the Udinese Channel.

"But in my opinion he is a pivotal player and he can repeat his performances from last year."

Pozzo suggested that Di Natale's decision to call time on his playing career may have been influenced by frustration at Udinese's poor form.

"If at a time like that a captain makes a statement like that it shows that he is someone who takes the shirt seriously, it shows that he wants to be able to do more.

"I'd like the fans to show their great appreciation for Toto who is low in morale because things aren't going as we'd like."

image: © Flavio Di Pietro

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