Fresh from conquering Brazil and the 2014 World Cup, Miroslav Klose of Germany is retiring from national team duties, a move that was expected and respected by his peers.
“The title in Brazil fulfilled a childhood dream of mine,” Klose said via a statement posted on the German NT’s website. “I am proud and happy that I could contribute to this great success for German football. There is no better time to close the national team chapter.”
And no one is arguing about the decision. At 36-years-old, Klose has achieved every soccer players dream in the sport. The German striker has played in 137 matches for the Die Mannschaft, the number is the second highest for any player in Germany’s history only next to Lothar Matthaus, who played in 150 games.
In four World Cup stints—2002 South Korea/Japan; 2006 Germany, 2010 South Africa and 2014 Brazil-- Klose has scored a total of 16 goals-- the highest number of goals scored by any player in WC history breaking the previous record of 15 set by Ronaldo of Brazil.
Klose made his international debut in March 24, 2011 in a World Cup qualifier versus Albania. He came in as a substitute at the 73rd minute he headed a goal to give Germany the 2-1 victory. That was just one of the 71 goals total he scored for the German NT—the total is another record for Klose as he became the top goal scorer for his country beating another German legend in Gerd Muller, who had 68 goals in his career.
Impressively, Klose’s German teams finished high—all within top four-- in all of his stints with the NT. Germany finished as runners-up in 2002; third place in 2006; third place in 2010; and champions in 2014.
“The success of the team was always my priority,” Klose shared.
Miroslav Klose walks away from the international game and no one can doubt about his national team accomplishments and results.