BUCHAREST - (ANSA-AFP) Inter defender Cristian Chivu has announced his retirement from international football. The Romania captain cites his age and recent injuries as the reasons behind his decision: "My career wearing the Romania shirt is over. My age and the injuries and operations I've had in recent years make it impossible for me to carry on battling on both fronts," writes the 30-year-old defender in a letter to the Romanian Football Federation (FRF).
"This decision ends one of the most important chapters of my life. Looking back I feel proud, honoured and grateful," he adds. Chivu goes on to recall the 12 years spent with his national team, of whom - he stresses - he will remain "the biggest fan".
His retirement announcement comes two weeks before Romania, who are still hoping to qualify for Euro 2012, face Bosnia in a Group D qualifying match in Bucharest on 3 June.