The Serb represented the Red Devils 300 times between 2006 and 2014, winning five Premier League titles and a UEFA Champions League along the way.
In a statement released on United's official website, Vidic said:
The time has come for me to hang up my boots. The injuries I have had in the last few years have taken their toll.
I would like to thank all the players I have played with, all the managers and staff I have worked with, and say a big 'thank you' to the fans for their support over the years.
The footballing community was quick to pay tribute to the 34-year-old:
Vidic retires. What a player he was. Him and Ferdinand without question one of best centre back partnerships ever to play in this country— Danny Higginbotham (@Higginbotham05) January 29, 2016
Vidic one of the last great bargain Fergie buys. Improved not just Ferdinand but #mufc defence. Helped he rejected Liverpool, too.— Samuel Luckhurst (@samuelluckhurst) January 29, 2016
As were his fans:
Happy retirement Nemanja Vidic Best defender I never watched at United— Ökiki (@Okiki_007) January 29, 2016
Vidic was the best CB in the world in his time what a player— Declan Cowan (@CowanDeclan) January 29, 2016
There was the occasional joke about why he might have picked now as a good time to call it quits...
When I heard Vidic had retired from football I thought he'd signed for Aston Villa— mark (@markyh1967) January 29, 2016
January 21st, 2016. Nemanja Vidic linked to Aston Villa. January 29th, 2016. Nemanja Vidic retires from football. #HeKnew— Michael Potts (@potts93) January 29, 2016
...though most chose to remember his iconic partnership with former England international Rio Ferdinand.
Vidic & Rio were the best Premier League defensive partnership ever in my opinion, nothing close to them.— Red Devil Chronicle (@wefollowunited) January 29, 2016
As much as Smalling has developed in the past year, Jones and Smalling are merely a shadow on the partnership of Rio & Vidic— Fred The Red (@redfreddevil) January 29, 2016
There was plenty of reminiscing about Vidic's best days in a United shirt.
And many wondered what Louis van Gaal would do to have a leader like Vidic in his side today.
Vidic the type of leader Manchester United need right now. Mind you, Louis van Gaal would have him playing on the right wing.— John Brewin (@JohnBrewinESPN) January 29, 2016
Van Gaal needs a player like Vidic in his defence, if we can get Vidic as a coach for our defenders that would do a world of good! #MUFC— Ashley (@Ash_DC_) January 29, 2016