Man Utd star follows in the footsteps of Scholes and Giggs with decision that could benefit Ten Hag
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Manchester United centre-back Raphael Varane has followed in the footsteps of Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs by announcing an early international retirement.
Erik ten Hag’s side were among the teams with the most squad members travelling to the last year’s World Cup.
Some 16 United players were involved in Qatar, with the likes of Lisandro Martínez and Varane making it all the way to the final.
However Argentina’s blockbuster penalties victory over France has proven to be the latter’s final involvement on the international stage.
Varane announces his retirement
Varane has announced his retirement from international football at the age of just 29.
The centre-back, who won the World Cup in 2018, scored five goals in 93 appearances for Le Bleus after making his debut nine years ago.
In a statement Varane said: "Representing our great country for a decade has been one of the greatest honours of my life.
"Every time I wore this very special blue jersey I felt immense pride. The duty to give it all, play my heart out and win every time we put on the field.
"I've been contemplating this for several months and deciding it's the right time for me to retire internationally."
Varane is the latest of Didier Deschamps’ side to retire after the Qatar World Cup. Last month Tottenham Hotspur goalkeeper and France captain Hugo Lloris stepped down from the international stage.
Indeed, Varane’s retirement has been viewed in some quarters as premature, with the centre back having been tipped to take over the captaincy from Lloris.
Giggs and Scholes’ retirement
Varane has followed in the footsteps of United legends Scholes and Giggs by retiring from the international stage with many of his best years still ahead of him.
Scholes retired from England duty at 29, at the time citing family reasons and club football as more important.
The Reds legend’s retirement came at a time when his playing time in central midfield was being limited by Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard.
However, after walking away from international football Scholes went on to play for nine more years at Old Trafford.
Equally, Giggs retired from Wales duty in 2007 at the age of 33. At the time it appeared the winger’s playing career was coming to an end.
However Giggs went on to play for United past his 40th birthday, changing his entire game to become a technically proficient, creative, central midfielder.
Featured Image Credit: Alamy
Topics: Football, Transfers, Raphael Varane, Manchester United, Erik Ten Hag, Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs