CF Montreal midfielder Victor Wanyama calls end to international career with Kenya

CF Montréal midfielder Victor Wanyama (2) dribbles the ball past FC Cincinnati forward Yuya Kubo during the first half of an MLS soccer match Wednesday, Aug. 18, 2021, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Jeff Dean)

CF Montreal midfielder Victor Wanyama, a former Kenya captain, is retiring from international football.

Wanyama made his senior debut in 2007 at age 15.

He went on to score seven goals in 56 games with the Kenyan national team.

"From making my debut against Nigeria to captaining the team at the African Cup of Nations finals in Egypt, these past 14 years have gone beyond what I ever though possible," the 30-year-old Wanyama wrote in a statement released via social media.

"We have shared great moments together and I am proud to have been your captain and leader.

"But all good things must come to an end eventually and after long consideration I have made the really difficult decision to retire from international football.

"The time has come to hand over the team to the next generation so they too can make their mark and help our country reach even greater heights."

Kenya didn't call up Wanyama for its African Cup of Nations qualifiers earlier this year.

Wanyama became the first Kenyan to play in England's Premier League in 2013 with Southampton.

He went on to join Tottenham before coming to Major League Soccer in March 2020.

A designated player, he's appeared in 44 MLS games for Montreal.

He also played for Kenya's Nairobi City Stars and AFC Leopards, Sweden's Helsingborgs IF, Belgium's Beerschot AC and Scotland's Celtic.

-- This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 27, 2021