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Stoke veteran Given ends Republic of Ireland career

Stoke City veteran goalkeeper Shay Given has called time on his career with the Republic of Ireland at the age of 40.

Given, who was part of the Republic of Ireland squad at Euro2016, made 134 appearances for his country in an international career spanning 20 years.

Given announced his decision on social media on Thursday: "It's every boy's dream to football for his school, his local club and, maybe in his wildest dreams, his country.

"To try and be as good at football as his father was before him and make his mother proud; I've been blessed that I have been able to do all this, from kickabouts in the backyard at home in Co.Donegal with my brothers, to playing for St Colombas college, Stranorlar, Lifford Celtic and then to making my debut with Republic of Ireland age 19.

"I'm one of the lucky ones who got to wear the jersey for his country and wore the badge with pride 134 times. But now it's time to hang up the gloves and move from the onion bag to the terraces, where I'll be shouting the lads on as one of Ireland's biggest fans.

"So as I retire from Ireland to focus on my club career, I want to say a huge thanks to everyone who supported me all the way; my close family, friends and the amazing fans. I couldn't have done it without you.

"And all my great team-mates managers and friends at the FAI. Go raibh maith agat."


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