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Pirlo targets international retirement after 2014 World Cup

2 May 2013 23:33

Italy midfielder Andrea Pirlo has announced plans to retire from international football following the 2014 World Cup.

The 33-year-old Juventus star feels the time is right to move aside to allow the next generation of players to flourish.

Pirlo made his senior Italy debut in 2002 and was part of the side that won the 2006 World Cup in Germany, holding his nerve to score in the penalty shoot-out victory over France in the final.

Having represented his country for over a decade, Pirlo is ready to focus his attentions fully on extending his club career, insisting he will carry on playing for Juventus.

"We have to leave space for the youngsters to come through," said Pirlo at the launch of his new autobiography.
"At club level I will continue playing as long as I feel the desire, passion and the sense I am still important to the team.

"If any of those elements are missing, I’ll be the first to step back."

Pirlo has made over 90 appearances in total for Italy and is on the verge of helping Juventus to secure back-to-back Serie A titles.


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