Ballon d’Or winner Karim Benzema has announced his retirement from the France national team a day after his country lost the World Cup final against Argentina.
“I made the effort and the mistakes it took to be where I am today and I’m proud of it! I wrote my story and ours ends,” the 35-year-old Real Madrid Madrid Striker wrote on Twitter.
An injury had forced the reigning Ballon d’Or winner to withdraw from the World Cup ahead of France’s first match in Qatar. He scored 37 goals for France in 97 appearances.
The Real Madrid player, who won the Ballon d’Or award in October, had been desperate to feature in Qatar having not been selected when France won the World Cup in Russia four years ago.
He was frozen out of the France team for five and a half years because of his involvement in a blackmail scandal over a sex tape involving his former teammate Mathieu Valbuena.
In a trial last year he was handed a one-year suspended prison sentence and fined 75,000 euros ($79,500).
For the Qatar World Cup, coach Didier Deschamps opted not to call up a replacement and France still had depth in their squad, particularly in an attack led by 23-year-old Kylian Mbappe.
Paris Saint-Germain forward Mbappe won the World Cup Golden Boot award with eight goals, including a hat-trick in Sunday’s penalty shootout defeat by Argentina following a 3-3 draw at the end of extra time.