Raphael Varane Retires From International Duty With France
He was inspired to represent his country after watching Zinedine Zidane score twice against Brazil and the team celebrating their 3-0 win.
France defender Raphaël Varane has dropped a bombshell in footballing circles by announcing his retirement from the national team on Thursday, becoming the second high-profile player to leave Les Bleus after they lost to Argentina in the World Cup final last December.
The 29-year-old had made 93 appearances for France since his debut 10 years ago and was one of the stars of their 2018 World Cup triumph in Russia.
On his Instagram page, Varane wrote: “Representing our magnificent country for a decade has been one of the greatest honors in my life. Every time I wore the blue jersey I felt an immense pride”.
He famously scored with a firm header during the quarterfinal win against Uruguay in this tournament and will fondly be remembered as an elegant ball-playing defender who possessed excellent positional play and an uncanny ability to make important interceptions look effortless.
Alongside fellow retiree Hugo Lloris and forward Antoine Griezmann, he was among manager Didier Deschamps’ most consistent players, someone he could always rely on.
It is therefore understandable that Deschamps expressed both understanding and regret over Varane’s decision.
“I understand his point of view and respect his decision, even though it might seem a bit of a pity given all that he’s achieved with the national team,” said Deschamps, who captained France when they won their first World Cup in 1998.
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