Hazard Quits International Football

By Chimezie Nebolisa

Belgium captain Eden Hazard has announced his retirement from international soccer at the age of 31 after his team's disastrous outing at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

The playmaker featured in all three Group F games as Belgium beat Canada, lost to Morocco and played out a goalless draw with Croatia to finish third.

Hazard made his debut in 2008, scoring 33 times in 126 appearances. He helped Belgium reach the 2018 World Cup semifinals, where they lost to eventual champions France, and beat England in the third-placed playoff.

On his Instagram page, Hazard wrote: "I have decided to put an end to my international career. The succession is ready. A page turns today... Thank you for your love. Thank you for your unparalleled support. Thank you for all this happiness shared since 2008... I will miss you."

Belgium coach Roberto Martinez stepped down from his role on Thursday following a disappointing tournament in Qatar for the team ranked second in the world.