Oxford United striker Jamie Mackie has announced his retirement as a professional footballer after over 500 games.
Jamie was a trainee at Wimbledon back in 2003 but made his name at Exeter City before moving to Plymouth Argyle and then QPR where his non-stop enthusiasm quickly made him a crowd favourite. After spells at Nottingham Forest, Reading, and a second spell at Loftus Road he joined the U’s in the summer of 2018 and made 91 appearances with his farewell coming in the League 1 play-off semi-final at home to Portsmouth.
Jamie, who made nine appearances for Scotland, told us that it was a tough decision to have to make.
“It was extremely tough because I have loved every moment of being a footballer and it’s all I’ve ever wanted to do. Those play-off games were so emotional especially because I had known all the way through that they would be my last games.
“ I wanted to end on a high but that wasn’t to be and so the last week or so has been all about talking it through with my family and making sure it wasn’t just a reaction to the disappointment of losing at Wembley.
“It’s not that. It’s about knowing when the time is right to hang the boots up. Karl Robinson and everyone at Oxford has been brilliant and it has been a pleasure to come in to work every day alongside them. But it’s time for a new challenge. If that’s in football in some way then great, but if not then I can walk away knowing that I have given it everything I had to give in every training session and in every game I played.”
Karl Robinson told us:
“We understand and respect Jamie’s decision and I want to thank him personally for everything he has given us not just on the pitch but off it. He has that tremendous enthusiasm for the game and to retain that passion for so many years is remarkable.
"He’s talked about media work but whatever he does I know he will be successful because there is an honesty and a work ethic which I know he will always have.
“He knows he is always welcome here and on behalf of the football club we thank him and wish him well.”