Dagenham & Redbridge midfielder Stuart Thurgood has announced his retirement after suffering a serious knee injury.The 28-year-old has not made a first-team appearance since tearing his cartilage in the 2-1 defeat by Rochdale in November 2009. [LNB]"I've now had four operations on my knee to take the cartilage out and to try to repair it but it's just not worked," he said. [LNB]"My knee isn't getting any better. It's sore on a day-to-day basis." [LNB]The former Tottenham trainee made 19 Daggers appearances after signing from Grays Athletic at the beginning of last season. [LNB]"The physio John Gowens has done all he possibly can to help me," he added.[LNB] I've just got to get used to not kicking a ball and doing something I've always loved doing. It's not until you don't do it that you realise how lucky you are Dagenham & Redbridge's Stuart Thurgood "He's given me the rest that I needed and helped me do all the work I could do on it. There wasn't any more John could have done for me and I'd like to thank him for that." [LNB]Thurgood enjoyed two spells with Grays, as well as short stint at Gillingham, and will be familiar to Southend fans, making 79 league appearances for the Shrimpers. [LNB]The hard-working midfielder is unsure what he will do next. [LNB]"The club have been really good to me and offered me a job coaching with the academy but at the moment it's not something I want to look into," he said. [LNB]"I've just got to get my head around the idea of not playing again. I turned that job down but I want to thank the club for trying to help me all they can. [LNB]"I've just got to get used to not kicking a ball and doing something I've always loved doing. It's not until you don't do it that you realise how lucky you are."