Makelele wants out after qualifiers

France holding midfielder Claude Makelele insisted he was retiring from international football after Euro 2008 qualifying.

    Makelele (R) at Germany 2006 with Spain's Fernando Torres (L)

    The Chelsea player had initially announced his international retirement at the World Cup in Germany, but has since been selected in the French squad by coach Raymond Domenech.

     

    "For me there's no question, I won't be going to the Euro," Makelele told France's L'Equipe newspaper.

     

    "I think I'm already fulfilling a reasonable objective by helping them to qualify."

     

    33-year-old Makelele said he hoped Domenech understood his decision not to continue on to 2008 tournament to be held in Austria and Switzerland.

     

    "I think he will probably accept my decision," said the midfielder. 

     

    "All I want is that France qualify so that I can walk away from the national squad in peace."

     

    Makelele has 52 caps for France and was involved in recent Euro 2008 qualifying matches against Georgia and Italy, outraging his club coach Jose Mourinho.

     

    France take on Scotland in Glasgow on October 7 in their next Euro qualifier, and then play host to the Faroe Isles on October 11 in Sochaux.

    SOURCE: AFP


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