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Man United defender Raphael Varane bids emotional farewell after France international retirement

Manchester Evening News logo Manchester Evening News 25/03/2023 Steven Railston
Varane has retired from international football. © Instagram Varane has retired from international football.

Manchester United's Raphael Varane bid farewell to international duty on Friday night at the Stade de France.

Varane, 29, announced he'd taken the decision to retire from international football last month and he was paraded on the pitch, alongside Hugo Lloris, Blaise Matuidi and Steve Mandanda, before France's match against the Netherlands.

The defender made his France debut in 2013 and enjoyed close to a decade of service for Les Bleus. He won the World Cup in Russia in 2018 and made a total of 93 appearances for his country, some of which he wore the captain's armband in.

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However, Varane has struggled with injury in recent seasons and his retirement from international football allows him to prioritise United, whilst also giving him more time with his family and his two young children, Ruben and Anais.

France defeated the Netherlands 4-0 in the match and Varane expressed thanks for his nation's support after the game.

''Thank you so much for the amazing welcome," Varane wrote on social media "What an honour to be able to close this wonderful chapter of my career in this way. Even in my wildest dreams I couldn't have imagined all this.

"There are no words strong enough to describe my love for the France team. I was always proud to represent my country. I’ve been blessed to wear this beautiful shirt for 10 years. Gave it my all, from the first game to the last.

"I went through all the emotions. Ups and downs, with of course as a highlight, the World Cup! Through it all, I have always felt your support and encouragement. Today I am simply happy and proud to have been part of this journey.

"I am committed to continuing this beautiful legacy we built, together, through @generation.2018.

"I would always be behind our French team. Thank you.''



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