Raphael Varane hits back at criticism over his early Retirement.
Raphael Varane, the French center-back for Manchester United, announced his retirement from the French national team this week.
The 29-year-old was a key figure in France’s 2018 World Cup victory and came close to repeating the feat in the most recent tournament.
Despite the presence of young talent such as William Saliba, Benoit Badiashile, and Ibrahima Konate, former French international Jerome Rothen criticized Varane’s decision, calling it a “disaster” and urging him to help mentor the next generation.
In response, Varane spoke with RMC, stating, “I gave everything I had, both physically and mentally, but playing at the highest level is like being in a washing machine; you play constantly and never stop. The schedules are overwhelming and I feel suffocated, as the demands of being a player are consuming my life as a person.”
The reduced number of games and the protection of a body that has suffered injuries in recent years will likely benefit both Varane and United manager Erik ten Hag. Ten Hag has been able to extract the best from Varane this season and believes there is still more to come from the veteran defender.
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