Karim Benzema retires from international duty aged 35 after missing out on France's World Cup final run with injury | The Sun

KARIM BENZEMA has announced his retirement from international football.

The Real Madrid star made the cryptic reveal a day after France's World Cup final loss to Lionel Messi's Argentina.

Benzema, 35, tweeted: "I made the effort and the mistakes it took to be where I am today and I'm proud of it!

"I have written my story and ours is ending."

Benzema was named in Didier Deschamps' 26-man squad that looked to defend the World Cup in Qatar.

But a thigh injury ruled him out, although Deschamps never replaced the forward.

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It led to rumours that he was set to make a shock return to the French side in time for the final having returned to Real Madrid training.

But Benzema appeared to brutally rule himself out as he posted on Instagram: "I don't care."

The prolific goalscorer did wish his nation luck on the final, which they lost on penalties.

Benzema's future in the national side faced doubt after RMC Sport reported Benzema turned down president Emmanuel Macron's invite to watch the game.

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L'Equipe later added the player cut off all ties with the French squad after manager Deschamps refused to call him up.

It is the latest saga in Benzema's story with the national team.

He first made his debut in 2007 and was a regular up until 2015.

But Benzema was banned from playing for France for his alleged role in blackmailing team-mate Mathieu Valbuena over a sex tape scandal.

He was in November 2021 guilty of complicity and sentenced to a one-year suspended jail term by a court in Versailles.

Benzema was also fined 75,000 euros (£63,000) but planned to appeal the verdict.

In the same year, the LaLiga legend was named in France's 26-man squad for the delayed European Championships.

And it paved the way for Benzema to return to the France team last June in a 3-0 win over Wales – later scoring four goals at the Euros.

The attacker played in subsequent Nations League and World Cup qualification matches.

But in November he was officially ruled out of the winter World Cup through injury.

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In the tournament, Olivier Giroud surpassed Thierry Henry as France's all-time top scorer with 53 goals.

Benzema meanwhile has returned to Real Madrid training ahead of the LaLiga restart and retires from France with 37 goals in 97 matches.



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