Veteran French goalkeeper Mandanda has retired from the international arena.
Veteran French goalkeeper Steve Mandanda has announced his international retirement at the age of thirty-seven after winning the 2018 world title and finishing second in 2022 as substitute goalkeeper for captain Hugo Lloris.
“Today my career with the French national team ends,” said the Rennes goalkeeper, who has worn the colors of the French team since 2008, at a press conference on the eve of the match against Paris Saint-Germain, leaders in the French Football League.
The former Marseille goalkeeper, who has worn the colors of the Roosters team in 35 international matches, indicated that the decision was “made at the end” of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, which France lost to Argentina on penalties.
Mandanda said: “I had great moments with the French national team and I was lucky and happy to cut all those moments. But at the age of thirty-seven, I think now is the right time to “empower others,” at a time when “a lot of young people are coming in with high quality.”
The end of Mandanda’s career came five days after the retirement of France’s best goalkeeper Lloris.
With the departures of Lloris and Mandanda, the road seems to be paved for Mike Mignan (27), AC Milan’s Italian goalkeeper who was absent from the last World Cup due to injury, to wear the jersey of France’s first choice goalkeeper.
France will play the Netherlands on March 24 at Stade Saint-Denis in the suburbs of Paris for the opening of the European Cup 2024 qualifiers.