Sergio Ramos has played his last match for Spain. The Real Madrid legend and current Paris Saint-Germain center announced on Thursday in a statement that the new Spanish coach, Luis de la Fuente, informed him that he will not be called up for the national team from now on.
“The time has come. It’s time to say goodbye to the Spanish national team. To La Roja. This morning, I received a call from the current coach who informed me that I am not and will not be part of his plans. regardless of how I do or what I do in my career,” the statement said.
“With a heavy heart, it is the end of a road that I hoped would last longer and end with a better taste in the mouth, on par with all the success we achieved with La Roja. I honestly believe that this journey deserved to end at my choice or because my performances were not at a level worthy of our selection, not because of a question of age or other reasons that, although I have not heard them directly, I have certainly heard them.
“Because age in itself is neither a virtue nor a flaw, it is just a number that is not necessarily related to performance or ability. I admire and envy players like Modric, Messi and Pepe. They are the essence of tradition , values, meritocracy and justice in football. Unfortunately, it won’t be like that for me because football is not always fair and football is never just football.”
Ramos, who will turn 37 on March 30, has been a staple in Spain’s backline since his debut in 2005. In recent years, injuries have kept him out of the international squad, including selection for the 2022 World Cup. His last appearance for Spain was in March 2021. With 180 international matches, he holds the record for the most appearances with the Spanish men’s national team.
“This is something I have to accept, although with this sadness that I share with you but also with my head held high, and grateful for all these years and for your support,” the statement continues. “I come with unforgettable memories, all the titles we have fought for and celebrated together and the tremendous pride I feel as the most capped Spanish international of all time. This badge, this shirt and these fans, all of you, have made it . I am happy. I will continue to support my country with the passion of someone who is lucky enough to represent it proudly 180 times. My deepest thanks to everyone who believed in me!”
Ramos retires from international football as a winner of the World Cup (2010) and two-time European champion (2008 and 2012).
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