Mexico captain and all-time cap leader Andrés Guardado announced his retirement from the national team on Tuesday.
Guardado, 36, said before the 2022 World Cup that the Qatar tournament would be his “last chance to achieve something for the national team” and made it official on Instagram.
“I had already said it a long time ago, but I have not stopped giving thanks for everything I have experienced in these 16 years with my team! Impossible to express in words how grateful and privileged I feel!!! Thank you from the bottom of my heart to everyone who accompanied me”, said the Real Betis midfielder.
“[Thanks] of course to all the loyal fans who have accompanied me throughout all these years now that I am one of you!”
His last game for Mexico was a 2-0 group stage loss to Argentina at last year’s World Cup, where he also last served as captain.
Guardado played in a record 181 games for Mexico and scored 28 international goals from 2005 to 2022. He won three CONCACAF Gold Cup titles in 2011, 2015 and 2019, with the national team and a CONCACAF Cup in 2015. The Cup CONCACAF Gold The 2015 Ballon d’Or winner was also a member of the CONCACAF Best XI in 2015, 2016 and 2018.
The veteran is on a select list of players from Mexico to play in five World Cups alongside Guillermo Ochoa, Rafael Márquez and Antonio Carbajal, who died May 9 at age 93. Argentine Lionel Messi, Portuguese Cristiano Ronaldo, German Lothar Matthaus and Italian Gianluigi Buffon are also on that list.
Born in Guadalajara, Guardado made a name for himself as a speed winger and a product of local club Atlas’ youth academy. After a two-year career in Mexico’s top flight beginning in 2005, Guardado moved abroad to join Spain’s Deportivo La Coruña in 2007. The midfielder later played for Valencia (2012-2014), Bayer Leverkusen (2014 ), PSV Eindhoven (2014-2017). ), and now with Real Betis since 2017.
The veteran is reportedly close to extending his contract with Real Betis until 2024.
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