Euro 2012 qualifying

Greece star Gekas in shock international retirement

September 9, 2010
By ESPNsoccernet staff

Greece striker Theofanis Gekas has taken the surprise decision to retire from international football with immediate effect.

Theofanis Gekas played against Georgia on Friday
GettyImagesTheofanis Gekas played against Georgia on Friday

Gekas, 30, announced his decision on Thursday evening, citing unspecified problems within the Greece national squad.

He has scored 20 goals in 52 appearances for the country and appeared in both of the opening Euro 2012 qualifiers against Georgia and Croatia.

"After some long thinking I have decided to stop playing for the national team, due to certain special conditions created within the squad and which I have made known to those responsible for the team," Gekas said. "I want to wish success to Greece and my team-mates and thank everyone."

Gekas, who represents German club Eintracht Frankfurt, scored ten goals in qualifying for the 2010 World Cup finals and made two appearances in South Africa.

He joins Yiannis Amanatidis and Sotirios Kyrgiakos in withdrawing his international services in recent weeks.