Barcelona:Spanish footballer Gerard Pique confirmed Saturday that he will step down from international football following a disappointing World Cup campaign in Russia last month and will only focus on playing for Barcelona.
“I have had a really good time, with a European Championship and a World Cup, but that story is at an end,” Pique told reporters prior to Barcelona’s Supercopa clash with Sevilla.
“It has been a wonderful time and I have experienced amazing things, but sometimes you have to end cycles and you have to do that in the right fashion.
“I’m very happy to have participated in all these successes, but now I want to focus on Barca. I have three years left and want to give it all at club football,” Pique added.
The 31-year-old centre-back, who has made 102 international appearances for Spain played a key role with another former great Carles Puyol in their triumphant 2010 World Cup campaign while he was also the part of the squad that won Euro 2012.
New Barca No.8
Barcelona: New Barcelona signing Arthur Melo will don the famous No.8 jersey in his first season at Camp Nou, the club confirmed in a statement Sunday. The famous jersey was worn by club legend Andres Iniesta for more than 20 trophy-laden years before moving to Japanese top division side Vissel Kobe this summer. The decision to hand ex-Gremio player the famous jersey shows the Catalan giant’s confidence on the 21-year-old midfielder, who won comparisons to Iniesta even before signing on thanks to his exploits in the Copa Libertadores. Meanwhile, another signing Malcom will wear No.14, which was worn by his Brazilan mate Coutinho as the latter has been reavealed as Barca’s new No.7.