(Adds more on political plans)
KIEV, July 28 Famed Ukrainian striker Andriy
Shevchenko has quit football to start a career in politics with
an independent party just months ahead of the October
Shevchenko has joined "Ukraine - Forward!", formed this year
by politicians who were expelled by the main opposition
coalition that used to be led by former prime minister Yulia
Tymoshenko, the party said.
"Perhaps, I will shock everyone: my future has nothing to do
with soccer," Shevchenko was quoted as saying in a statement by
his former club Dynamo Kiev. "...It is related to politics."
His new party quoted him as saying: "I want to find myself
in politics, share the experience I have acquired in Europe, do
something for my country."
He did not make clear whether he plans to run for office.
Shevchenko, 35, started his career in Dynamo and then moved
to AC Milan, where he became one of Ukraine's most famous
players. His next stint with Chelsea was less successful and he
started playing for Dynamo again in 2009.
Shevchenko also played for Ukraine in June's Euro 2012,
which the country co-hosted with Poland, but the team failed to
progress from the group stage.
"Ukraine - Forward!", led by parliament deputy Natalya
Korolevska, used to be the Social-Democratic party and was long
a member of Tymoshenko's opposition faction BYuT.
Tymoshenko was sentenced to seven years in prison last
October on charges she abused her office, in a case widely seen
in the West as politically-motivated.
Korolevska fell out with the BYuT's new leaders and they
expelled her party from the bloc, accusing it of secretly
co-operating with the government, which it denies.
(Reporting by Olzhas Auyezov; Editing by Sonya Hepinstall)