ROBBIE KEANE today announced that he will retire from international football immediately after the Republic of Ireland’s friendly international with Oman at the Aviva Stadium next Wednesday.
The 36-year-old former Celtic striker has enjoyed an 18-year international career in which he made a record 145 senior appearances for Ireland and scored an incredible 67 goals, making him the all-time leading Irish goalscorer with more than three times more goals than the fella in second place.
In his statement Keane spoke of his “great honour, for both me and my family, to have been given the opportunity to captain my country for over ten years.”
Keane was earlier named in a 28-man squad for the games against Oman and the opening World Cup qualifier against Serbia in Belgrade the following Monday.
He signed for Celtic on February 1st 2010 when he agreed a 6-month loan deal and scored 16 goals for the club in the 19 games he played in.
The full statement from the LA Galaxy striker reads as follows:
‘Today, I am announcing my decision to retire from International football following the upcoming game with Oman on 31st August in the Aviva Stadium.
‘It has been a wonderful journey for me to have played with the Irish national team for over eighteen years since I made my senior international debut back in 1998. I have enjoyed it all.
‘It has also been a great honour, for both me and my family, to have been given the opportunity to captain my country for over ten years.
‘As a young boy growing up in Dublin playing football on the street I could never have imagined the path my life would take – it has exceeded my wildest expectations.
‘I have been extremely lucky to have had the opportunity to play for and captain my country – it was my ultimate goal all those years ago and it has been, by far, my greatest achievement.
‘I would never have believed all those years ago that I would get the opportunity to play for my country 145 times and to score 67 goals and through it all, I have never stopped chasing the next one!’