Former Derby County, Aston Villa, Birmingham City, Hull City Leicester City and West Brom defender Curtis Davies set to retire at 39

Curtis Davies celebrates his winner for Cheltenham Town at Burton Albion
Curtis Davies celebrates his winner for Cheltenham Town at Burton Albion -Credit:Nizaam Jones/CTFC

Curtis Davies is likely to announce his retirement from professional football after a career spanning more than two decades.

That is the view of Cheltenham Town boss Darrell Clarke, speaking immediately after a 2-1 defeat at Stevenage condemned the Robins to relegation from League One on the final day of the campaign.

The club's oldest ever EFL player Davies addressed a deflated squad in the changing room following the final whistle and Clarke said: "Curtis has just spoken and what a warrior he is. He'll probably call it a day now, but what a guy, what a guy.

"He said it was a privilege to play with these boys, for their resilience this season and he doesn't mince his words, so that's credit to the boys - they've had a response from a proper warrior."

When Clarke took over at the end of September, Davies had found himself out of the starting XI for two games, but he was quickly reinstated by the new manager.

Despite being sent off in Clarke's first game in charge - a 2-0 home defeat by Fleetwood - Davies has been an automatic choice for the majority of the season, setting an example for younger players with his professionalism and attitude.

"We just had to find a way to get Curtis Davies into the team because he defends his box so well and attacks the opposition box so well too," Clarke said.

"He was on the bench when I first came in, but he is a warrior of a player.

"He has his limitations because he's 39 now and his legs aren't as fresh as they used to be, but what a guy."

Davies has played in the Premier League for Aston Villa, Birmingham City and Hull City and in the Championship for Luton Town, West Brom, Leicester City, Birmingham, Hull and Derby County.

The former England Under-21 international won his first cap for Sierra Leone during his season with Cheltenham, fulfilling a long-standing ambition.

London-born former Luton Town scholar Davies helped Luton win the League One title in 2004/05 and was part of Steve Bruce's Hull team that secured promotion to the Premier League via the play-offs in 2016.

He had also scored for Hull against Arsenal in the 2014 FA Cup final at Wembley, which the Gunners won after extra-time.

His only goal in 38 appearances for Cheltenham was the winner in a 2-1 success at Burton Albion, which ensured the battle to survive went right to the wire.