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Javier Mascherano retires from international football after Argentina’s FIFA World Cup 2018 exit

Javier Mascherano decided to retire from international football after Argentina were defeated by France in their FIFA World Cup 2018 Round of 16 encounter on Saturday.

football Updated: Jun 30, 2018 23:49 IST
FIFA World Cup 2018,Javier Mascherano,Javier Mascherano retirement
Argentina's Javier Mascherano looks dejected after their loss against France in the FIFA World Cup 2018 on Saturday.(REUTERS)

Javier Mascherano announced his retirement from international football in the aftermathof Argentina’s 4-3 defeat to France at the World Cup.

The 34-year-old played in all four of Argentina’s games at the tournament but could not prevent their elimination at the round of 16, France forward Kylian Mbappe scoringtwice in the second half of a thrilling knockout tie.

READ | Kylian Mbappe breaks Pele’s record as France beat Lionel Messi’s Argentina

Mascherano has been a mainstay for the national team for well over a decade and his selection for Russia saw him appear at a fourth World Cup.

However, following the defeat in Kazan, he told reporters: “It’s time to say goodbye and encourage from the outside.

“In football you often do not get the things you want, butthe important thing is not becriticised foranything.

“We have given everything, we had a great rival.”

The former Barcelona and Liverpool midfielder - who now plays his club football in China - alsooffered a message of hope for Argentina’s future, adding: “Keep insisting. Sooner or later it will happen.”

First Published: Jun 30, 2018 23:15 IST