Date: 16th January 2008 at 8:30pm
Written by:

Former Alex striker Juan Ugarte has decided to retire at the age of just 27 after a persistent injury. The Basque striker spent a season at Gresty Road when he signed for free in summer 2005. After 17 goals in 24 games for League Two Wrexham there were high hopes, and almost became a fans favourite before he pulled on a Crewe shirt.

However, problems behind the scenes meant Ugarte barely got the chance in the first team. He made just one start for the club, in a embarassing 5-1 hammering at the hands of Lincoln in the League Cup. He also made two sub league appearances.

However, by October he had been loaned back to his former club Wrexham but his time there was cut short when he damaged his knee during his first game. He spent the rest of the 05/06 season receiving treatment but another loan move to Wrexham in February ’06 and another injury saw his time as an Alex player come to an end. He eventually agreed a pay-off and was released in the summer of ’06.

He returned to Wrexham, eventually winning a new 18 month contract, but the injuries have persisted and having made just four sub appearances since leaving the Alex, he today decided to call time on his career.

In an open letter to Wrexham fans on the official Wrexham website, he wrote: ‘My hamstring won’t let me give 100% to play professional football and that’s why I am taking this decision.’

Vital Crewe would like to wish Ugarte the best in his future, wherever it lies. It’s a shame his time at the Alex was such a disaster after much excitement on his arrival.