Manchester United and France defender Raphael Varane has announced his retirement from international football today.
The former Real Madrid centre-back quits Les Bleus after winning the 2018 World Cup and the 2021 Nations League. He earned 93 caps for his country since his debut ten years ago.
Varane also helped his country to reach the 2022 World Cup final. He was one of the squad leaders at the tournament and was tipped to take over from former captain Hugo Lloris.
The Tottenham Hotspur goalkeeper quit international football a few weeks ago, and Varane has followed him into retirement.
“Representing our great country for a decade has been one of the greatest honours of my life,” the 29-year-old wrote on Instagram (via Le Parisien).
“Each time I wore this special blue jersey, I felt immense pride. The duty to give everything, to play with my heart and to win every time we enter the field.
“I have been thinking about it for several months and decided that it was the right time for me to retire from international football.”
Varane recounted his childhood experiences watching the French national team. He also talked about winning the World Cup, calling it one of the most memorable moments of his career.
He will now focus his attention on United. He helped the Red Devils win their Carabao Cup semi-final tie against Nottingham Forest last night and will likely be in the team that faces Newcastle United in the final.
It is United’s first appearance in a final since their Europa League win in the 2016/2017 campaign under Jose Mourinho.
United are fourth in the Premier League after 20 games. They remain in the FA Cup and Champions League.
It underlines the brilliant job manager Erik ten Hag has done since joining the club from Ajax.
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