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Koscielny to call time on France after WCup

Arsenal defender Laurent Koscielny is retiring from international duty with France after the World Cup. Photo/SKY SPORTS

LONDON, United Kingdom, Nov 8 – Laurent Koscielny has reluctantly acknowledged that he will need to retire from international football after the 2018 World Cup.

The 32-year-old Arsenal centre-back has 49 caps for France, having first made his debut in 2011.

He featured for Les Blues at Euro 2012 and the 2014 World Cup, and has a silver medal from the 2016 Euros.

But having struggled with an ongoing Achilles injury, the former Guingamp, Tours and Lorient defender knows he can’t keep playing through the pain.

Speaking ahead of facing Wales in an international friendly on Friday, Koscielny told L’Equipe: “There is an end to everything.

“After the World Cup, I would be almost 33-years-old, it will be time to leave the place.

“I have six months left in the French team to blossom and take as many memories as my wife would say.”

He added: “Every morning I have my treatment for my Achilles and I know I need to do this to the end of my career.

“Now, every day I do this and it is okay but sometimes with all the games we play every three days, it is difficult and I need to have a rest to recover well for my Achilles.”

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