Gerard Piqué retires from international football
Written by: Waseem Zaidi
The former Manchester United player will challenge his La Roja teammates at club level now.
Spanish international, Gerrard Piqué has announced that he is retiring from international duty at the age of 31.
Ahead of Barcelona’s clash against Sevilla in the Supercopa de Espana, Piqué dropped the bombshell, much to the shock of his fans. He was quoted as saying, “I spoke to Luis Enrique and I told him my decision was made and pondered upon.” The centre-back further added that while it was a lovely time with the national team, he now wanted to shift his focus towards FC Barcelona.
Watch: Gerard Pique announces international retirement during Barcelona's pre-match Spanish Supercoppa press conference
The Catalan defender is one of the most decorated players in the game, attaining glory at both international and club level. He ends his international career amassing an impressive 103 caps for Spain, during which he won the 2010 World Cup and 2012 European Championship. The centre-back was a key figure for Spain in a period where they dominated world football with their tiki-taka style of play.
Piqué was however, criticized for his performance in the recently-concluded FIFA World Cup 2018 in Russia. His foul on Cristiano Ronaldo led to the third equalizing goal in an epic draw with Portugal. However, the fans have come out in full support and expressed their disappointment over his decision. People across different social media platforms have lauded Pique and his contribution to the cause of the national squad.
The timing of the announcement has taken the world by storm, with many fans citing the recent unfair criticism at the centre of it all. Whatever the reason may be, Spain will surely miss the towering presence of Piqué in the heart of their defense. His partnership alongside counterpart Sergio Ramos was solid and it was a tall order for any attack to pierce through them.
Published: Sun Aug 12, 2018 12:12 PM IST