Daniele De Rossi, the Italian midfielder who joined Boca Juniors last year after a career spent at AS Roma, announced his retirement from the game on Monday.
He said he would return home to spend more time with his family.
De Rossi, who won the World Cup with Italy in 2006, surprised colleagues and fans alike when he moved to Buenos Aires in July.
He said this was because he wanted to play for a club he had always admired.
However, he was dogged by injury and made only seven appearances for the Argentine giants and scored one goal.
The 36-year-old told reporters he would take some time off before studying to become either a coach or director.
“I feel the need to get closer to my daughter and my family.
“There’s nothing else behind this,” he said.