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World Cup’s oldest player Essam El-Hadary retires from Egypt duty

Egypt goalkeeper Essam El-Hadary, who this summer set the record as the oldest player to feature at a World Cup, has retired from internationals.
The 45-year-old, who won four Africa Cup of Nations, made his debut in 1996 and played 159 times for his country.
He played Egypt’s final group game in Russia, saving a penalty in the Pharaohs’ 2-1 defeat by Saudi Arabia.
The veteran goalkeeper announced his intention in a statement, saying: “There is an end for every start, after a lot of thinking I took my decision to international retirement 22 years, 4 months and 12 days from my first match with Egypt and I saw that this is the right moment to hang my gloves after we made the Egyptian people happy by participating in the World Cup.
“This is a moment I didn’t want to come, I trained hard day and night to reach high performances and to be with the Egyptian team, I am very proud to play 159 matches with Egypt, won the African Cup of Nations four times, reached the final in 2017, won the best goalkeeper in Africa four times, won the Arab games in 2007 and finally reach the World Cup.
“Finally, thank God for everything. I want to thank my family for helping me always especially my father and thank every one of you for your support that helped me a lot to reach all these achievements.”
At club level, however, El-Hadary remains active between the sticks for Egyptian top-flight side Ismaily.
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