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Alderweireld retires from international duty at 34
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Toby Alderweireld has retired from Belgium duty
Toby Alderweireld has retired from Belgium duty

Toby Alderweireld has retired from Belgium duty, with the defender the latest member of their Golden Generation to hang up his boots.

The 34-year-old, who played 127 times for his country in a career spanning 13 years, is the third most-capped player in Red Devils history.

Former Tottenham and Atletico Madrid centre-back Alderweireld represented Belgium at five consecutive major tournaments, including three World Cups and two European Championships, and was a member of the squad that finished third at Russia 2018.

But following a disappointing group stage exit in Qatar last year, he has now become the latest experienced member of their squad to call time on his international career.

"As a little boy, I dreamed of playing for the national team," Alderweireld told the Belgium national team's official website. "I am very grateful and proud that this dream has become a reality.

"I can look back, 14 years later, on 127 international matches, three World Cups, two European Championships and countless beautiful memories.

"With pain in my heart, I announce that I will retire from the Red Devils with immediate effect I have given myself completely, physically and mentally.

"I want to thank all my team-mates and the staff for the unforgettable moments we shared together. Without them, none of this would have been possible."

Alderweireld made his debut in 2009 during a 1-1 draw with Chile, though he did not become a regular until 2013.

He subsequently was a member of their squad at the Brazil 2014, Russia 2018 and Qatar 2022 World Cups, as well as Euro 2016 and Euro 2020.

His retirement follows team-mate Eden Hazard's decision to bow out following their disappointing Qatar campaign.

Belgium will play their first games under new coach Domenico Tedesco later this month, with a Euro 2024 qualifier against Sweden and a friendly against Germany.


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