French World Cup-winning defender Raphael Varane announces international retirement on Instagram. Varane reflects on his childhood dream of playing for France and the unforgettable experience of winning the World Cup in 2018. He thanks Didier Deschamps, the management and staff, his teammates, and the fans for their support throughout his international career.
Varane believes it is now time for the next generation of talented players to take over and receive support from the fans.
In an instagram post Varane wrote "As a child, I remember following France 98, this team, these players who made us experience indescribable emotions. I dreamed of being our heroes and 20 years later I lived one of the best experiences of my life, the ones that made me really proud. We brought home the Cup !! I will never forget it. I still feel every single one of the emotions felt on that day, July 15, 2018. That was one of the most amazing and memorable moments of my life. This victory that we won all together would never have been possible without the support of Didier Deschamps, every member of the management and staff over the years, and my teammates who have defended our shirt in every game we played. But more importantly, this victory would not have been possible without every single one of you supporting us along the way. Even after the defeat in the final last year, with a beautiful course, you welcomed us as heroes when we returned. To each and every one of you, THANK YOU a thousand times! will miss these moments with you for sure, but the time has come for the new generation to take over. We have a bunch of talented young players who are ready to take over, who deserve a chance and who need you.”
He began his professional career at Lens before joining Real Madrid in 2011. Since joining Madrid, Varane established himself as one of the top defenders in the world, winning numerous titles including four Champions League titles and La Liga titles. In 2018, he was a key player in the French national team's World Cup-winning campaign and Nation's League Cup win in 2021.
Varane has also been awarded individual honors, including the Best French Player in Ligue 1 award in 2011 and the UEFA Champions League Defender of the Season award in 2018.
He is widely regarded as one of the best defenders of his generation. Varane has helped strengthen Manchester United following his transfer to the English giants from Real Madrid in the year 2021. The French stopper back has provided solidity to the defensive lines of Erik ten Hag’s new-look United.