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Toni Kroos retires from international football

DFB Deutscher Fußball-Bund - Die Mannschaft (German Men's national team)

Toni Kroos has stepped down from the Germany national team, as the 31-year-old Real Madrid star announced this Friday.

“I have played 106 games for Germany. There won’t be another one,” the midfielder wrote on Instagram, “I was hoping that I could end up with 109 caps and one more major title, the European Championship, and gave my all to try and make that happen. I had long decided that this tournament would be my last. I have known for a while that I won’t be putting myself forward for Qatar 2022.”

Kroos scored 17 goals for the national team. His greatest achievement with Germany was the 2014 World Cup win in Brazil. Since making his international debut in 2010 in a 1-0 defeat to Argentina, Toni Kroos has participated in all three World Cup and EURO tournaments, making 28 appearances and scoring three goals. His most memorable was in the 7-1 semi-final win over Brazil in 2014, where he scored two goals in the space of 69 seconds – the fastest brace in World Cup history. The 2-0 Last 16 defeat to England on the 29th June was his last in a Germany shirt.

Kroos ended his post by thanking the fans and Joachim Löw: “It has been a huge honour to have been able to wear this shirt for such a long time. I always did it with pride and passion. Thank you to all the fans and supporters that helped carry me with their applause and cheering, but also to all those critics who gave me extra motivation.”

“Finally, I want to sincerely thank Jogi Löw. He made me a Germany international and a World Cup winner. He put his faith in me, and we have written a long success story together,” Kroos went on to write, “It’s been a blast. Wishing you all the best – and lots of luck to Hansi Flick.”

In his post, Toni Kroos also named the reasons for his decision: “…mostly because I want to be fully focused on my goals with Real Madrid in the coming years. I also want to be able to afford myself some down time that I haven’t been able to have in eleven years as a Germany international. On top of that, I want to be around more for my wife and three children as a husband and as a father.”