Bastian Schweinsteiger has announced via social media that he is retiring from international football.
The German midfielder made his international debut 12 years ago and has gone on to make 120 appearances for Die Mannschaft, scoring 24 goals.
Schweinsteiger had an underwhelming first season at Manchester United as he suffered from a string of injuries that reduced the 31-year-old to just 18 Premier League appearances.
He announced the news of retirement in German earlier today, thanking Germany fans for their support over the years.
— Basti Schweinsteiger (@BSchweinsteiger) July 29, 2016
Following Germany’s semi-final exit from Euro 2016, Michel Ballack suggested in an article that, in the interest of elongating his club career, Schweinsteiger should retire from international football. He seems to have followed that advice.
Both Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes went down the same path; needless to say, it was a decision that worked wonders for their club careers. If Schweinsteiger is to make an impact on the first team next season, then removing the strain of international football is imperative.
It would have been a difficult decision to make – especially for somebody who has passionately represented his country for so long. However, with his focus now entirely on Man United, supporters could finally see Schweinsteiger discover that midfield prowess that saw him conquer both Europe and Germany with Bayern Munich for so many years.